Goodbye, Identity Politics. Goodbye, Asian American Identity

How timely. I’ve had this idea for this particular short post in my head all summer, and today David Brooks published this: In Praise of Equipoise. Now I don’t know about leadership or crossing over to do the kind of outreach that Brooks is describing, but I do know that identity politics is killing this country. Both the Alt-Right and Black Lives Matter are filled with narcissistic blowhards who talk too much, and both are responsible for fomenting hatred. Asian American activism has been ruined, especially by the so-called Asian American feminists. We (the commenters on this site and I) have spent the last few years railing against the sickening disease of victimization that has plagued both the Black community and the Asian American leftist community, but we’ve done so mostly within the framework of being in those communities. It’s time for us and identity politics to declare an amicable split. So I’m done.

I’m still the same person I’ve always been. I’ll still fight for equal rights: affirmative action is a racist policy that discriminates against Asians. I’m still a member of the group “Asian Americans Against Affirmative Action” because it’s important for those who face the most discrimination from a racist policy to speak against it by declaring who we are. I still believe we need more Asian representation in literature and in the media. We also need more diverse portrayals of people of other races. But I’m fighting now not as an Asian American, but as a human being. I’m not going to continue to pretend that so-called Asian American feminists are fighting for any cause other to claim more institutional power for Asian American feminism, nor am I going to continue to help others perpetuate the lie that Asian American feminists have the moral high ground in most of their debates. In general, they are anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese culture, anti-Asian male, pro-White male, and pro-emotion-over-logic. They’re guilty of the same kind of prejudice that they’re always accusing others of harboring. People who are part of that movement aren’t necessarily bad people, but they’re terribly misguided.

I’m also declaring my objection to crybullying against “cultural appropriation.” If you’re a White or Black or other non-Asian content creator, I have no objection to you writing Asian characters in your work. None. In fact, I encourage it. I do so not just for your benefit, but for mine and for American society as a whole. My fear of bad portrayals is must less menacing than my fear of censorship and political correctness gone wild. In other words, Lionel Shriver was right.

I’ve changed my tagline to read, “Ideas, Common Sense, and Asian American Literature.” It was important for me NOT to have Asian American remain the first word in my blog description. I still have a soft spot for writing about the Asian American experience, and I’d still like to use this space to get the word out about new authors and new works, but as for defining myself as an Asian American or perpetuating an us vs. them mentality, I’m done. Finished. I will no longer be a part of a movement that has gotten way out of control and is responsible for the hatred and polarization that is hurting our society. I will no longer support a movement that has really become the lap-dog of a far more powerful and destructive movement, namely Black Lives Matter and extreme leftism.

Now some may say, “Hey, YOU can define the movement! If you don’t want it to be an extreme leftist movement, reclaim it!” The problem here is that I no longer want it. I want to embrace humanity for what it is. I don’t want divisions. It’s not healthy for us as human beings, nor is it healthy for society, especially given the way intermarriage is turning us all into one big family. Yes, discrimination against Asian men in the dating game still exists. Yes, I’m not going to jump on the Asian American feminist bandwagon by saying that the unequal playing field is a good thing. But I’m also not going to deny the reality that we need to accept the disparity at certain level. “Round one” of this fight has been going on since the 1970’s. We were losing as Asian American men back then, and we’ve continued to lose until right now. We’re doing better than we were during the 70’s, but we’re still losing. Let’s NOT repeat the same losing strategy for the next fifty years. We’re losing in part because we’ve self-segregated. Let’s continue the fight, but let’s do so not as part of a segregated identity, but as human beings.

Just one quick caveat–I think it’s GOOD for young Asian men to temporarily segregate themselves in order to find answers without distraction. It was a crucial step for me when I first started out. But for those of us who’ve put in that time and who understand what’s going on, we need to unsegregate (which is quite different from integrate, which to me implies that we completely drop our culture. I’ll probably have more to say about this at a later time).

I’ve spent more time thinking about my Asian American identity than 99.999% of the people out there. I think it was time well-spent, and I think I’ve learned a lot of history and human behavior from that time and effort. But it’s time to move on. I want to be open to see the world as it really is, to see people for who they are, not for the identities they claim. I may or may not post here as often as I have in the past, but I hope you’ll all join me for the ride.

36 thoughts on “Goodbye, Identity Politics. Goodbye, Asian American Identity

  1. The original intended affirmative action isn’t the same as the current affirmative DISCRIMINATION system that the Fangs and their hashtagtivism cronies espouses.

    Have a great weekend!

  2. I’ll be here for the ride.
    I think you’re wrong Byron. Keep embracing your Asian identity. You’re once again taking the high ground. You should love no other race but Asian. There’s no right or wrong in this world. Only money and power, and you were born for the woke Asian men team. We should segregate ourselves, but no in the manner you said. We need to take care of our teammates. Asians like to fight amongst themselves, but for now asians have the same goal. Asian men can carve their own roads, we don’t need the other teams to recognize us. Who gives a shit anyway, as long as our team is doing well financially and supportive of each other. Why do you care about affirmative action? We can set up our own elite universities. Why do you care asian men don’t get dates? There are black women and women outside the US.

  3. Jenn and her SJW peers are just the grown-up self-haters that we all saw in highschool/university who focuses all their energies showing the world how unstereotypically Asian that they are. Their views are far from representative of the grassroots. They don’t have any conviction and they are followers at heart. In fact, merging last years gall-up poll on affirmative action with the Karthick’s poll would suggest that ONLY Asian Americans support race-based considerations when it comes to university admission. However, if the last years gallup poll is accurate, I think that it wouldn’t be long before Karthick revises his poll and Jenn changes her tune with regards to affirmative action.

    Jenn’s generation and earlier are lost causes. However I’m more optimistic about the future. Checkout this AAW you-tuber. She has 1.6 million subscribers and the video just uploaded yesterday already has 58,000 views.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbhsXa7FzUM&feature=youtu.be

  4. I think it’s much more insidious than just self-hate, it’s a power play to vye for power at the detriment of Asian Americans.

    Very similar to and the opposite side of the same coin of alt-right wingnut AF wives and lackeys, the SJWs are just working for the regressive leftist agendas.

    While academic freedom should be promoted and respected, Ramakrishnan’s political science department really has to look into possible academic misconduct for falsifying data. There’s politics there, obviously, but the fact biased data collection/sampling and blatant mis-representation to affect public policy is something public academic institutions shouldn’t take very lightly. Especially as it pertains to a UC school that’s directly influenced by said public policy generated by an employee.

  5. I think I get the gist of what you’re saying, but I have little faith that this country is at a place where they’ll let you forget that you’re Asian-American. If history proves this wrong, though, all the better.

  6. And maybe “forget” is the wrong phrasing as I’m sure you’re not forgetting, but I hope you know what I mean!

  7. I totally know what you mean!

    I think what I’m saying i that I’m no longer going to be aligned with the complainers. I’m no longer going to place my identity in that bucket. I think the term is still useful in some areas, but we need to focus more on coming together than coming apart.

  8. >we need to focus more on coming together than coming apart.

    said every single Asian living in the West who claimed, “we just need to assimilate”. Those people achieved very little for us.

    You are frustrated with fake Asian “feminists”, SJW, and other clowns, but preaching “we’re all just one” is not the answer in the West, where race trumps all.

  9. Most normal people are for both diversity AND ancestral Identity. Some of the extremists would pick only one for diversity, and forget their ancestral Identity politics.

    For young Asian Americans if they’re not able to identify back to their roots, heritage, and where they came from.
    Most young AA’s would ID as whitewashed, white worshipping, chigga hip hop blackness, or they think they’re brown Latinos (example Filipinos). So when we see many young Asians white worship, we question why they’re that way for the lack of identity politics.

    This Festival attracted a huge crowd at AAID Identity LA Festival
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdKHJrmUlRI

  10. Yeah but where’s the accountability, old parents still gotta do the right thing and teach their children the right way. If there’s anything we’ve learned from the Hapa reddit is bad parenting can lead to confused hapa AA’s with identity issues.

    The old parents of those young AA’s in the video taught them well, that’s why those youngins turned out that way and not ashamed of who they are.

  11. I’m not sure if accountability ever has anything to do with a parent’s parenting with respect to race issues. If you adjust for generational differences, I’m not sure that what those parents are doing is all that different from what my parents did. I’m not sure it’s all that different from what my parents’ parents did. I’m not sure it’s all that different from what I’m doing right now.

    Do you think it’s different?

  12. I gave specific examples and you want me to talk about your parents? I’m sure your parents raised you well, but that’s not the area of my expertise as I don’t know you personally. In general, there are no differences in raising kids the right way regardless of race.

    The specific examples were the video and why those youngsters kept shouting out Asian Americans and their theme is about identity, in what ways did their parents raise them to have that effect? Or was that effect came from Phillip Wang, his Wong Fu Productions, Justin Chon and a series of other folks.

    Race is not an issue in family raising unless it’s missing or problematic resulting in identity issues, which leads to the other example about the Hapa Reddit and of course Eurasian Writer’s own personal anecdotes. They provided a series of personal anecdotes of how bad parenting can affect young hapas growing up confused with identity issues.

    The young Asian Americans of the future aren’t all full Asians. A large portion of young AA’s of the future comprised of Hapas and adopted Asians.

    I’m keeping my parenting style and my parents parenting style out of this because I’m not interested to talk about myself.

  13. I thought it was clear from the context, but in case it wasn’t, the point wasn’t to talk about my parents or me (or you or your parents, for that matter). The point was to talk about how my parents’ generation raised Asian American kids, how their parents’ generation raised Asian American kids, and how my generation does so. I’m not really seeing any difference here. I’m not seeing anything that needs to change that isn’t already changing naturally.

    What you saw in that video doesn’t really seem to be all that different from past generations either. Kids these days are more camera-ready because it’s the cell phone generation, but that’s a generational thing, not a race thing.

    The whole hapa thing is a different can of worms, in my opinion. It’s interesting, no doubt, but I’m not sure there are any real lessons that people can really share between the two, outside of general ideas of what constitutes good parenting.

  14. If we’re talking about the community, it’s not all about old people. The video shows young people of this generation are fully aware of their identity dynamic, but they don’t take it too seriously. They made jokes and sarcasm, the whole point was to have fun with it. For anyone to say young AA’s are totally oblivious to racial identity is a false assumption. Even for right wing young guys like the Fung Bros who hate the SJWs, when we look at their channel they have quite a collection of videos where they talked about race issues, specifically about Asians.

    For accountability and responsibility, in our last discussed topic, you said this about the AFCC Club:
    “At the end of the day, we’re all responsible for our own choices.”
    http://www.bigwowo.com/2017/08/justice-department-may-eliminate-affirmative-action/#comment-327928

    For these girls to date Asian guys, they are going to compare Asian guys to white guys. Without identity politics, all these girls see are the negative aspects of Asian guys. What ID politics does is it puts a positive spin on Asian guys showing the positive qualities for the girls to make their choices, and that’s what these Festivals are for, providing cultural outlets for these girls to see that Asian guys are just as cool as any other Non-Asian guys.

    Similar logic with immigration, right now Trump and the GOP want to curb/cut new arrival annual immigrants down to 45k from 110k of years past. That’s the blame of the media for constantly showing one-sided news, the ugly side of immigrants. If there’s any way to put a positive spin to showcase the good contributions immigrants have brought to the country’s economy, millions of immigrants in STEMM fields with their contributions in lab research and technology, all that require identity politics.

  15. If a woman is so shallow that she needs to attend a festival just to open her mind to the concept of dating her own race, then she likely has serious problems that no amount of identity politics could help. There’s also the fact that people like her are unlikely to go to such events in the first place. I think most men of any race can do without people her.

  16. Kondō’s article is simply pointless clickbait that even contradicts its own premise with saying “There is no real evidence yet that a mass exodus of Asian American men are flocking to the alt-right. If anything, there is a stronger connection between the alt-right and the Asian women they covet as replacements for too-feministy white women.”

    Indeed, he should focus more on the fact Elaine Chao and other high profile AFs are married to the alt-right and getting murdered left and right by them.

    The regressive left hides their racism under the guise of “artistic license” in their propaganda, but the openly racist alt-right makes it clear East Asians should be slaughtered in their way to world dominance. Neither side allows for Asian Americans to peacefully co-exist.

    It’s only the true progressives like Bernie Sanders and environmentalists who want sustainable futures for all that’s accepting of people of color.

  17. Kiwi, it’s not to take them back, not in the literal sense. And definitely not to condone their blatant racism. It’s just one way to answer the ongoing debate question/query from many Asian guys.

    The ongoing questions are: “Why don’t 95% of those AF celeb biaches ever date Asian guys?” or “Why don’t those (I only date white guys) AFs ever going to date Asian guys?”. Do the Asian guys who asked these questions literally want to take those girls back? Absolutely not, but they continued to ask anyway. So the Festival is just one way to provide an answer those questions, it’s not meant to literally take them back.

    The AF celebs might not attend those Festivals, but the ordinary “I only date white guys” AFs do attend in bunches, they love Asian food and the fun. The main theme of most of these Asian Festival events are food and fun, not necessarily any political agenda.

    I used the Festivals as a way to light a glimpse into those racist girls’ minds and how they might think. Basically, that’s the way they operate, pretty shallow, but hey what do you expect from them. In general, most of them do not go back to Asian guys, but there are always exceptions – for example Lisa Ling used to date mostly white guys before she settled down and married an Asian guy.

    Preference isn’t consistence and isn’t set in stone, and there are always exceptions to the general rule. An AF may have dated all Asian guys, but she could still end up marrying a white guy. So don’t get too comfortable with preference, it can change from time to time until she’s married.

  18. There’s so much in Nighttown and Kiwi’s posts that I disagree with. I’m not sure where to start. But let me give it a go.

    NT,

    I didn’t know that the Fung Bros. were against SJWs. I’ve seen some of their videos, but if they’ve taken a logical stance on politics, I probably have to check them out again.

    Now as for your comment, I didn’t see anything in that video that said that the women date Asian. I think that’s a big assumption, one that could easily be wrong. I also didn’t see anything that said that building up the Community Club was the purpose of these festivals. Are you of that generation, or are you closer to my age? If you’re of that generation, maybe you can tell me what your generation is thinking right now. The way it looks from here, things haven’t changed much at all. I’m pretty sure I’ve blogged about this, but the anti-Asian male sentiment was much worse for the Gen-X’ers. It’s getting better, no doubt. But as far as I know, nothing really serious has come to replace that, and it has relatively little to do with intentional parenting.

    http://www.bigwowo.com/2013/04/asian-american-generational-changes-and-how-the-ir-debate-is-a-generation-x-thing/

    Kiwi,

    As I said to NT above, I didn’t see anything that had anything to do with the Celebrity Club vs. the Community Club with respect to these festivals. That said, if these festivals help fix the disparity, I’m not sure why Asian dudes would be against them.

    Woman with the Russian name/Aardvark,

    Yeah, I don’t like that article for the very reason aardvark mentions: he basically contradicts and disowns everything he says with that one quote. Since he himself sees nothing to support his thesis, can we really accept his thesis as a legitimate concern?

    I do accept a lot of what he says about Asian American men and what we face. We’ve been talking about that for years. But he’s got his eye on the wrong ball. Asian American men are not loving the Alt-right; they’re suffering from the Far Left.

  19. Now as for your comment, I didn’t see anything in that video that said that the women date Asian. I think that’s a big assumption, one that could easily be wrong. I also didn’t see anything that said that building up the Community Club was the purpose of these festivals.

    lol, I did not say any of that, you’re misinterpreting what I said.

    Let me requote exactly what I said about the video.

    “The video shows young people of this generation are fully aware of their identity dynamic, but they don’t take it too seriously. They made jokes and sarcasm, the whole point was to have fun with it.”

    “that’s what these Festivals are for, providing cultural outlets for these girls to see that Asian guys are just as cool as any other Non-Asian guys.”

    “The AF celebs might not attend those Festivals, but the ordinary “I only date white guys” AFs do attend in bunches, they love Asian food and the fun. The main theme of most of these Asian Festival events are food and fun, not necessarily any political agenda.”

    “I used the Festivals as a way to light a glimpse into those racist girls’ minds and how they might think. Basically, that’s the way they operate, pretty shallow, but hey what do you expect from them. In general, most of them do not go back to Asian guys, but there are always exceptions”

    The Fung Bros made a video about Ghost in the Shell’s whitewashness, and the SJWs started to pour in filling up the comment section back and forth with their opposing voices. The FBros totally shut down that video, from then on I felt like the FB did not like the SJWs very much. lol

  20. @ bigWOWO

    if these festivals help fix the disparity, I’m not sure why Asian dudes would be against them.

    How many men do you know would want to be with a woman who bases her racist dating decisions on a festival? Do you want to marry a woman like that? For me and all the guys I know, the answer to both is “none/no”. We prefer someone more classy. If she’s superficial enough to make life decisions based on trivial matters, I would hate to see how she deals with real life.

    The disparity in itself is not the problem. It’s the attitudes that underlie it that are.

    @ NightTown

    Lisa Ling used to date mostly white guys before she settled down and married an Asian guy.

    So she got sick of dating White men and settled for her loathed second choice: Asian men. It must be nice to be seen as a fallback that others can take for granted.

  21. Just a little misunderstanding, no biggie. Yeah, the Festivals are not for dating, and definitely not dating decision maker.

    How many men do you know would want to be with a woman who bases her racist dating decisions on a festival? Do you want to marry a woman like that? For me and all the guys I know, the answer to both is “none/no”. We prefer someone more classy. If she’s superficial enough to make life decisions based on trivial matters, I would hate to see how she deals with real life.

    Who does this?

    Nobody makes real life decisions and thinking about marriage on the first meeting, on a whim. We’re not even talking about the 1st date.
    For blind meetings in a whim where two parties have never met before, usually just to get the phone #s. They get to know each other during the first 3 dates or so, to see if they’re compatible with each other, then talk about real life decisions and to see if the other person is marriage material or not.

    So she got sick of dating White men and settled for her loathed second choice: Asian men. It must be nice to be seen as a fallback that others can take for granted.

    This is opinion based, there’s no right or wrong answer about this. It depends on Asian guys’ political stance, if they’re anti-diversity then they’ll probably agree with you, if they’re pro-diversity (like me) then I see this kind of thinking as identity politics gone extreme. I’ve seen this type of talk before on stormfront where they didn’t want to take back white girls who were sloppy seconds and been on a few rounds with black guys.

    The way I see it is, if her ex was an Asian guy, I’m still her second choice. Race is irrelevant, we’re not involving in a big group, just 2 individuals in a relationship.

  22. @ NightTown

    If you think Asian women who follow a “White men only” dating policy are “pro-diversity”, then you seriously need to reexamine people’s motives.

  23. I don’t judge them all as one big group, I judge individuals. Yeah, in general most of them are anti-diversity, but like I said there are always exceptions.

    Lisa is one of those exceptions, she grew up in an environment and surroundings similar to how hapas grew up in and most hapas do not know any better. Until the Asian American community or Hapas community (as in the Hapas Reddit) took the initiatives and accountability to WAKE them up. I felt like Phillip Wang’s huge platform is his way of using Identity Politics to bring cultural dimensions to Asians and Asian guys, to open racist people’s eyes and minds.

    Lisa’s family took accountability and it was her mom’s friend, I believe. Lisa went college where all of the girls in her circles dated whites, her sister dated whites, she didn’t know any better and did the same. She did not have any Asian guys asked her out on dates. She grew up idolizing Bruce Lee, so she did not hate Asian guys. Her mom’s friend had an Asian son, so they were introduced and ended up married.

  24. @ NightTown

    Phillip Wang’s huge platform is his way of using Identity Politics

    Uh, no. If you’ve ever attended one of Wong Fu’s events, you would know they are actually pretty adamant that they are against the idea of being representatives of Asian Americans or doing things solely on behalf of the community. In fact, they are actively trying to avoid being typecast as merely “Asian filmmakers”. So the entire notion that they are trying to play Asian identity politics is way off.

    As for Lisa Ling, maybe you are right. She could be an exception. Even though you were wrong about Philip Wang, I’m not closed to the possibility. But if so, she hasn’t been very publicly vocal about enlightening others who also “didn’t know any better”. Don’t get me wrong, though. She’s not obligated to. Still, her silence makes clear what her priorities are and aren’t.

  25. So the entire notion that they are trying to play Asian identity politics is way off.

    You’re right, my wording was wrong. The word “politics” should not be there, that line should read like this:
    “Phillip Wang’s huge platform is his way of using Identity …… to bring cultural dimensions to Asians and Asian guys, to open racist people’s eyes and minds.”

    They make comedy sketches and skits for entertainment, there’s nothing political about them. I already mentioned above that they are “not necessarily any political agenda.”

    However, the word race “identity” is more accurate to describe them. They don’t have to declare to represent anything because it’s the messages in their contents that racist people open their eyes and minds to.

    In fact, they are actively trying to avoid being typecast as merely “Asian filmmakers”.

    Saying it is one thing, but until they’re actually doing it is another. Even when their skits have Non-Asian cast members, they made sure the leads are Asians or Hapas. That’s race identity, the exact opposite of Haolewood. They don’t need to say anything or admit to anything, the messages in their contents speak for themselves.

    By the way, just for fun, I’ll include this list to show that I can recognize Asian channels that don’t have race identity. Ratings between 0 to 10, ten being the most race identity in their contents:

    Ricegum = 0
    Wassabi Productions = 0
    NigaHiga = 1
    JustKidding Films = 2
    Fung Bros = 3
    ArdenCho = 4
    Wong Fu = 6
    LeenaProductions = 7
    IsaTV = 8

    Ricegum has 8.5 million subs, Wassabi Productions 9.2 million subs, and NigaHiga has 20 million subs. Not surprisingly and coincidentally these channels have the most subs while having the least race identity in their contents, their contents are more diversed catered to a wider audience.

  26. I’m also declaring my objection to crybullying against “cultural appropriation.”

    – Bigwowo

    In case you folks are missing this, checkout how Jeremy Lin shows ballz and eloquence by responding to Kenyon Martin’s accusations …
    https://www.netsdaily.com/2017/10/6/16434818/the-story-of-jeremy-lins-dreadlocks-and-why-its-bigger-than-kenyon-martin

    IMO, the torch has been passed from Ichiro to Jeremy when it comes to a sports celebrity reppin for Asians (especially Asians in the west)

  27. I’m surprised Lin sees Black-Asian unity as some magic solution. In the grand scheme of things, Blacks and Whites share more in common with each other than either group does with Asians. While Lin hasn’t gone the Asian SJW route of virtue signal advocacy of every non-Asian cause while throwing Asians under the bus, I’ve heard some bad things about his character from people who’ve met him, including a friend of his brother. So he’s hard to read.

    IMO, Lin inhabits a Black dominated space so he realizes he needs to walk on eggshells when dealing with Black issues. We saw the unprovoked vitriol against him from Blacks when he became popular so obviously he’s not in a position to be more assertive. So he’s stuck playing the “kumbaya let’s all get along” shtick. Whoopdeedoo.

  28. The classic “let’s get along” kind of liberal looks much better next to the modern “attack everything and everyone” radical liberal. I’m disappointed people think the racists attacking Martin are Lin fans (and through racist logic must all be Asian since the only people who’d like Lin must be Asian right?) when clearly a lot of the alt right anti-PC crowd are going to jump on this for their own goals.

  29. So he’s stuck playing the “kumbaya let’s all get along” shtick. Whoopdeedoo.

    – Kiwi
    The important point is that Lin stood up to Kenyon Martin, forcing him to delete his crap. Also, there are probably more than one or two active players who share Martin’s sentiment – Lin is already receiving more than his fair share of illegal elbows and clothes-lines. Standing up for himself most likely ain’t gonna help with that. But he is willing to show some spine.

  30. @ mmjames

    I’m not disagreeing with you. This is already way better than what I hoped for. All I’m saying is that if what I’ve heard about Lin is true, I suspect that in his worldview people are measured only by their power.

    That’s not reassuring.

  31. Most people are for BOTH diversity AND Identity

    Looks like JLin is one of those people, in this clip he talked about AM masculinity.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paSH0Ip9pcU

    I wish he focuses more on his game after 5 years he’s still mediocre, never been to an All-Star game.

    Yao Ming was the first HOFer (Hall of Famer), Ichiro will be the second, and Manny Pacquiao will be the third.

  32. JL doesn’t have the tools or skills to be in the same class as those (soon to be) HOFers. Realistically, I hope he stays a legit starting PG in the league for a few more years. Being Asian American, he is aware of our issues and is willing to speak out. That will be his big contribution.

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