The song “Commencement Day” is dedicated to all my brothers and sisters who are keeping the legacy of the Asian Amerikan Movement alive and well.
YOUR BEEF IS MY BEEF — by Wildfire
The term ‘Asian Amerikan’ was an identity that was created during the 1960s. If you identified as Asian Amerikan, you were against the war in Vietnam. You were a leftist and an anti-imperialist. You were also for Asian Amerikan studies without hesitation.
Nowadays, the term Asian Amerikan has been co-opted. It no longer used in a way that signifies a united front against imperialism. In fact, when ordinary people (including Asians themselves) think of an Asian Amerikan, the first thing that probably comes to mind is hardworking people who fulfill the “Amerikan Dream” or the model minority myth. And what’s even more troubling about this is that Asians actually believe this shit!
Asian students, for example, usually pursue careers in the medical, law, science, engineering, and business fields, thinking that they will score big time because they’re going to make a lot of dough later on.
They might join a club that talks about being Asian Amerikan all the time but it goes nowhere, because they don’t know the history of the Asian Amerikan Movement. (And they don’t bother it learn about it on their own either.) There are only two reasons why they join these kinds of clubs: 1) to socialize and 2) it looks good on their resume because it shows that they’re part of the “multicultural” tapestry of Amerikkka.
After these students graduate, some are actually eager to work for corporations. They VOLUNTEER to be the running dogs of white supremacist capitalism! They volunteer to exploit other people.
Those that don’t get corporate jobs might look into being doctors or lawyers – the petit bourgeoisie. But they don’t serve the people either! Can you name an Asian Amerikan doctor or lawyer who would provide you their services pro bono?
I’m not going to criticize the students without criticizing people who influence the students. That means professors, counselors, and whoever else works for the administration under some kind of “multicultural” program. You don’t get to call out students and say that they need to be more active on campus.
Part of problem are you motherfuckers. You encourage them to assimilate. You miseducate them with the White Man’s history. You believe in the idea of multiculturalism – that Amerikkka is some kind of melting pot. How do you expect them to be active on campus if you’re feeding them shit? You need to stop following orders from the White Man and get your act together before you tell the students what to do.
And students: WHY ARE YOU LISTENING TO THOSE FOOLS?!
One reason why there is such a small number of Asians who are involved in radical politics is because they are so busy trying to lick the boots of the White Man and trying to be like the White Man. To assimilate is their wet dream.
Until students take over their own education and become exposed to Asian Amerikan history that empowers them to continue the legacy of those who were committed to the Asian Amerikan Movement in the 1960s and the 1970s, they will continue to be miseducated and abused.
Asians also must destroy the model minority myth so that Third World solidarity is possible. Continuing to uphold the model minority myth is not only self-hating because you’re taking compliments from the White Man, it pits Asians against other oppressed nationalities. Saying that Asians are the model minority means that Black people and Latinos are not model minorities. And that something is wrong with them. That they should look up to Asians. There’s nothing to look up to if Asians are voluntarily getting smothered by the white man’s ass. As Blue Scholars says, “Your beef is mine. We’re one in the same.”
This is part 1 of two posts on yellow fever. Here is the following post, “why yellow fever is fucked up!”
I was at my first demonstration a few months ago when I met a male activist through a friend. He was one of the leading organizers. I was new to everything — how to organize, activist lingo, political discussions outside of the classroom, and other activists. This guy that I met – let’s call him Allen – knew this and volunteered to “take me under his wing.” I did not hesitate and gladly welcomed his help.
As a womon — and an Asian Amerikan womon at that — I was vulnerable to men hitting on and harassing me. The stereotype of Asian womyn as submissive is pervasive and leads men to think “she can’t say no to me.” Naïve as I was, I thought that male activists would know better than to fetishize Asian womyn. How wrong was I to assume that! My illusion was quickly smashed when Allen spoke to me online soon after I met him.
He would be very flirtatious with me even when I did not reciprocate. For men, this should be a clear sign that the womon that you are speaking to is uncomfortable. Eventually, Allen asked me if it was a good idea if he asked me out. Without hesitation, I said no, I think it is a bad idea.
It was a bad idea for the following reasons:
(1) The power dynamics of the relationship is similar to that of a teacher and a student. He knew that I was new so he could take advantage of me in any way that he wanted to. His eagerness to want to “help” me should have been a warning sign. Not to mention, he is at least 10 years older than me. After speaking to some other activists about my experience, they told me that it was a common thing that womyn activists generally face — getting hit on by male activists. Tell me how you can go out there and protest about a big cause and NOT be critical of your own practices!
(2) It was obvious that he had Asian fetish. He had a “particular” type of womon that he was fascinated with: North Korean traffic guards. (Those were not the only pictures he showed me.) When he showed me those pictures, I felt objectified. After that, I tried to avoid having other conversations with him. However, I realized that shutting him out was not the best thing to do for me. Instead, I should have confronted him and heavily criticized him.
For Asian womyn, I think speaking out against yellow fever is empowering. You have to tell those bastards to back the fuck off! How else would you have control over your space and body?
The few exchanges that I had with Allen led to me an important conclusion: male culture in activist circles is no different from male culture outside of activist circles. It needs to be overthrown and replaced with a new culture that respects womyn.
I think Asian womyn can initiate this new culture by speaking more about our experiences with Asian fetish and coming up with ways to obliterate the problem. Concretely speaking, what we can do is to organize among ourselves. You know how guys gather together and cat call sometimes? Well, we can pull that shit on a guy who has yellow fever and is unwilling to change. Gather together and embarrass the shit out of him in public together.
However, if a guy realizes that yellow fever is wrong and wants to change, then a discussion might be helpful. These kinds of discussions, especially those initiated by Asian womyn, need to be public because it can help other Asian womyn.
But for starters, we need to flip the finger at those horny pricks who think that they can fuck with an Asian womon! Who said that Asian womyn are quiet and submissive??