Why I’d hate to be Asian.

A new video has recently gone viral of another college student, Sam Hendrickson ranting about why he would not like to be Asian. This video is similar to the video posted by UCLA student Alexandra Wallace a few years ago that faced severe backlash. In his video he goes on to list several reasons why he would not like to be Asian:

  1. Most Asians look alike
  2. If he was an Asian man he would probably be with an Asian women
  3. Sweatshops
  4. Asians would look weird high
  5. Math
  6. Show business
  7. Asians are short
  8. Sushi, it would be everywhere
  9. Asian males do not have a good reputation
  10. Asians blur their porn?

In his video Sam perpetuates several Asian/Asian American Stereotypes. First he makes the claim that he would not like to be Asian because he believes all Asians look alike. He also reinforces the stereotype that all Asians are good at math. He however almost did not graduate because he was not good at math. I was a little confused with this reasoning. I am  not sure if he means that by being Asian he would be automatically good at math and he does not want to be or that by being Asian he would be expected to be good at math even though  he is not.  He also bases his list on stereotypical physical characteristics of Asians, that they are short and that they have “chinky” eyes.  In watching his video you can see how he lacks knowledge about the diversity within the Asian American ethnic group and only refers to Asian/Asian American stereotypes

What surprised me the most about his rant was the fact that he believes that everything from his physical appearance, to his personality, and even his surroundings would change just because he is a different race.  He makes the remark that if he was Asian he would probably be with an Asian women and that makes him want to “kill himself”.  He also believes that if he were Asian there would be Sushi places all around him.  I believe this is an example of the idea of the forever foreigner because he perpetuates the idea that Asians are not real Americans that do, act, or think like any other American.  He also understands that if he were Asian he would be treated differently because of his race and the stereotypes that are associated with Asians/Asian Americans.

Like Alexandra Wallace he faced backlash from several people and proceeded to apologize over twitter. However, like Rosie O’Donnell’s apology after her ching chong remarks on the view, his apology did not seem sincere and placed the blame on the fact that people cannot take a joke. His first response to the backlash was “Well, hated by the entire Asian race apparently over a joke.” Only after he continued to receive more and more backlash did he claim that what he knew what he did was wrong and that he was sorry. However you can still see he is not taking the situation seriously as he continually tries to defend himself by saying that the video was only a joke.

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One thought on “Why I’d hate to be Asian.

  1. Videos such as this exemplify how racism is perpetuated–and suggests how the limited media representations play out on an individual level. Good posting!

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