Archived Posts - April 2001


Movie writer Tor Thorsen recommends the upcoming Jet Li movie Kiss of the Dragon in Reel.com's summer movie preview. Why should you watch this movie? Thorsen writes:

"Simply put, Li kicks ass, CG or no; exotic Parisian and Chinese locales; a romantic subplot with little-seen starlet Bridget Fonda. Also, hopefully Li will break Hollywood's unwritten Asian-leading-male taboo and actually plant a smooch on his American love interest this time around."



I caught the end of WWF Smackdown tonight. Stone Cold Steve Austin and Triple H came out to face their "mystery opponents." Guess who comes out? These two Asian dudes calling themselves "Kaientai." That definitely caught my attention. Two random Asian dudes facing off against the two heavy hitters in WWF? Okay. But then it got REAL bad REAL fast. They gave the guys microphones, but when they start moving their mouths, some weird white dude voice is doing their voiceover! And it echoes through the whole stadium. Like a badly dubbed kung fu movie. And the two Asian dudes are totally into it! As much as I was intrigued to see more Asian dudes in WWF, that dubbing part was freakin' racist!


As much as this business about the poll results is disconcerting, I can't say I'm surprised. In fact, the results seem like old news. I could have predicted these results. I'm just surprised the negative numbers aren't even more staggering --I was just caught off guard. Being back in the Bay Area, where Asians are almost the majority, has no doubt somewhat dulled my alertness on such matters. Here's the follow-up to Wednesday's article: Poll response offends Chinese-Americans


I just received an email describing recent hate crimes towards Asian Americans at Duke University. Here are accounts of the two incidents (they've been partially edited for content and language):

An Asian American woman was walking to her dorm room on West Campus late at night last week. A large number of men saw her and harassed her by shouting that she return the spy plane, referring to the US-China spy plane stand-off.

The chemistry test of an Asian American freshman mysteriously disappeared the day of the test; however, an unknown person forged his name on the top of another student's test. A week later, on returning from a weekend trip to Washington DC, he unlocked his room and found that his room had been rifled and a large sum in cash had been stolen. On his desk was his freshman yearbook, open to the page with his picture. His picture had been crossed out with a red pen, with the note "it's time to go home chink." He also received two threatening e-mails - one full of racial slurs and the other with an article regarding a decapitated man. Since then, the campus police have conducted a half-hearted and sloppy investigation of the matter. The officer assigned to the case failed to interview the student until a month after the incident, when she had come to a dead end and was ready to meet with him to close the case. At this meeting, she accused him of forging the entire crime, threatened him with 2 years of jail, and tried to force a confession out of him because "it's less work" for her.

This absolutely sickens me. It's not a good week for Angry Asian Man, folks. That's racist!


David sent me this article from the Mercury News. It's about a nationwide poll surveying the public attitude toward Chinese-Americans. Among the findings: One in four Americans hold "very negative attitudes" toward Americans of Chinese ancestry, and thirty-two percent said Chinese-Americans are more loyal to China than to the United States. Twenty-three percent of Americans said they are uncomfortable with the idea of voting for an Asian-American candidate for president. One-third said Chinese-Americans have too much influence in the U.S. technology sector. It's just more evidence that hardly anything really changes in this country when it comes to racial tolerance. People can talk all they want about the large strides made in fighting such ignorance, but in the end, Asian Americans are still constantly viewed as foreigners. That's racist! Here's the article: Survey finds bias against Chinese-Americans


Park Se Ri won yesterday's leg of the LPGA tour, snapping Annika Sorenstam's 4-tournament winning streak. Go Koreans!


In Bridget Jones' Diary, Bridget's mum calls the Japanese 'a cruel race.' Twice. That's racist!


Northwestern University announced that they will be hiring an Asian American Outreach Coordinator in the fall. Good work, to the outspoken students at NU, who have worked hard to fight for an Asian American studies major, and have tried to improve the cultural climate on campus.


HATE CRIME. There have been recent incidents of hate graffiti being found on the Stanford University campus during the last month. Concerned students have been organizing activities to educate and raise awareness about hate speech and racial tolerance. Graffiti? What a cowardly act. It angers me. That's racist!


Ming-Na Wen plays Dr. Deb Chen on NBC's ER. You've also seen her in high-profile roles in such films as The Joy Luck Club and Mulan. She's also supplying the voice for the character Aki in the upcoming movie Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. The movie is entirely computer generated!


Lee Bong-ju of South Korea won the 105th Boston Marathon today. He finished the 27+ mile race in 2 hours, 9 minutes and 43 seconds. Lee's win snapped a 10-year winning streak for Kenya. Go go go! says my Korean pride. Fii-ting! Remember a couple of years back when a Korean guy won the marathon race at the Olympics? That guy became a national hero. The same is no doubt in store for Mr. Lee. Actually, I personally think anyone who finishes a marathon in general should receive some big ass props. So, props.


Wang Zhizhi and the Mavs show up in Oakland tonight. Number 16 Wang keeps it real for Asians in the NBA. Could we be seeing more brothas like him in the near future? Check out this interesting article: Wang Brings New Era


For those in the area, check out the 2001 Chicago Asian American Showcase, going on April 12-21 at the Gene Siskel Film Center in the Art Institute. It's a film festival of over 86 films/videos, as well as musical performances, readings and an art exhibit. Most definitely be sure to check out the spoken word performance from I Was Born With 2 Tongues (right) on Monday (04.16.01) at Mad Bar. I got to catch a film at the festival for the past two years. Pretty good stuff. I regret not being able to go this year. It looks to be bigger, badder, better. Check it out: Chicago Asian American Showcase 2001


"Well, I will be in favor of apologizing [to China] the moment they apologize for all of those menus they keep leaving outside my front door." - Jonah Goldberg

One thing that this whole China/U.S. situation has shown, it's that cultural understanding and racial tolerance still has a looong way to go in America. True feelings are really beginning to surface, and it's disgusting, disturbing and unbelievably ignorant. Read this article from National Review, "Back to Realpolitik", in which Goldberg makes some pretty dang racist statements. Then read his follow-up column, "Inscrutable Racism", in which he makes an "apology" for his comments. Then get angry. The thing is, he's just one guy. You know a large number of Americans actually found his column humorous. David Letterman, Jay Leno and Craig Kilborn have all made similar jokes on their respective shows. Does that make it right? Now what are you going to do about it? Negative stereotypes. That's racist!


Beans checks in with his take on the new WB animated series The Oblongs:

Here's the scoop on the racist stuff from last night's show: Bob Oblong (main character...has no arms or legs) stumbles across a door marked 'animal testing' at the factory he works at. His boss sees him and blocks his way. Bob asks to see what's going on inside. His boss says, 'Well, all right ...Wait, you're not chinese are you?' Wen Ho ...innocent, never proven guilty ...they didn't even have a case ...but oh well, let's make a (lame) joke about it anyway.

One more thing ...during their mission to save the animals from the testing, this one character (characters?...he/they have two upper bodies --two heads and three legs) runs into a security guard(s) that also has two upper bodies and three legs. kind of funny. but then they just
happened to be kung fu-fighting wataaahh Asian security guards.

I usually don't really have a problem with TV shows or whatever --the kung fu fighting security guards weren't really a big deal for me ...the fight scene was actually kind of funny with all the arms and legs involved. But the lab/Wen Ho thing really annoyed me. Lame.

I haven't seen the show myself, but that doesn't sound cool to me. Making cheap shot jokes at Asians. That's racist!


The Ahn Trio: Lucia on piano, Angella on violin and Maria on cello. I just got their CD, Ahn-Plugged, a new and creative approach to classical music. One thing I find particularly interesting is the album cover design, which features the sisters decked out in their chique urban attire, hanging on playfully to the cello case. It definitely accentuates the hipper, sexier side of classical music.


Props to the filmmakers behind The Debut, currently showing grassroots screenings of their film. They've created an entertaining, well-made film, and have worked hard to create strong word-of-mouth marketing for it. Support The Debut and other films like it! You'll enjoy it, because they've done a good job. Check it out.


Also in sports, Boston Red Sox pitcher Hideo Nomo threw a NO-HITTER Wednesday against the Baltimore Orioles. Heck yeah.


Wang Zi Zi played his first game with the Mavs last night. Wang's eight-minute debut was highlighted by a top-of-the-key jumper for his first basket and two free throws. But most importantly, it was his shot that put the Mavericks over 100 points that meant most --it earned the fans a free Chalupa from Taco Bell. Go Wang! Go Chalupas!


I normally don't listen to Howard Stern, but this morning I caught it while flipping through stations, and it was DANG FREAKIN' RACIST. Oh man, where do I begin? At first there were clips of Chinese people on the street talking about the US/Chinese situation. They purposely aired individuals with poor English and thick accents --just so they could ridicule them. The hosts made comments like, "Does this guy think he's American or something?" and they'd play the sound of gong in the background intermittently. Then they started talking about how they'd be scared of going to war to China because there's so dang many of them. You could deploy all of our missiles at China, and there would still be millions left. Gah! It made me sick to listen to it. But then it went on. They had a black celebrity guest on the show, talking about his bad experiences with Korean shop owners --thus pretty much lumping all Asians together (they even said they can't tell any Asians apart anyway), not to mention excerbating the common conception that Blacks and Koreans can never get along. Then they put this Korean guy who called in on the air, and that foo just started going off about how he hated Chinese people. Great. That's what we really need. Start pitting Asians against each other. Sure enough, some Chinese girl called in to defend the entire Chinese culture. This was all much to the amusement of Howard Stern and crew. The ignorance of all parties involved is astounding. That's racist!


On March 23 2001, the University of Florida, Gainesville chapter of fraternity Delta Tau Delta hosted a "Mekong Delta" theme party, decorating its property with with fake barbed wire, sandbags, and a grass hut. Male guests attended dressed as GIs while women dressed as Vietnamese prostitutes. In a subsequent meeting with members of the Dean of Students Office and the Asian Student Union, members of Delta Tau Delta apologized, saying "the problem is we didn`t realize it was wrong. It never occurred to us, otherwise we would not have done it." Why is it that I am constantly reminded of racial ignorance on college campuses thanks to the work of stupid fraternities? I'm not knocking fraternities in general, but there's just something about Greek culture that breeds an environment susceptible to acts of absolute racial ignorance. "Mekong Delta"? What the hell? That's racist!


Cute little Asian girl in the commercial for California family health insurance. She's giving a mock newscast about the benefits of the plan. Very cute.


I read this bit in the San Jose Mercury News:

So sword fights in trees and epic romance aren't everyone's cinematic cup of tea. Certainly Bob Carr of New South Wales can leave it. Carr, the premier of the Australian state, was so unimpressed with the much-honored "Crouching Tiger, HIdden Dragon," starring Chow Yun Fat, that he walked out halfway through a screening. "I'm going to reintroduce film censorship in New South Wales to ban boring movies," Carr told the state Parliament last week. He was so annoyed, he even mangled the title while sniping away. "I cannot believe that a film called...'Crouching Tiger, Leaping Leopard' got several Academy Awards," Carr groused. The Taiwanese flick in fact won four of the little gold men last week, including best foreign language film.

The guy says it was boring (it's not), but we all know that real reason he didn't like it. Too many Asians. That's racist!


"Our priorities are the prompt and safe return of the crew and the return of the crew and the return of the aircraft...The first step should be immediate access by our embassy personnel to our crew members. I am troubled by the lack of a timely Chinese response to a request for this access." --President George W. Bush

U.S.-China tensions continue to mount over the U.S. Navy spy plane that was forced to land on Sunday after a collision with a Chinese jet fighter. Now, I'm not down with any kind of hostile Chinese actions, nor am I cool with China holding the aircraft and crew any longer than necessary, but this whole deal brings up something that I've been worried about for a couple of months: President Bush's ability to handle foreign affairs. That foo don't know ddong about relations with Asia. This incident with China and his dealings with Korea thus far have shown that the commander-in-chief lacks the sensitivity needed for this huge task. That foo better surround himself with some smart White House mofos, or else things with Asia are gonna get a whole lot uglier. He doesn't care about my people. That's racist!

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