Two Brown Girls

A pop culture podcast by Fariha Roisin and Zeba Blay

Whether you agree with Suey Park or not, the way this interview was handled was abominable and disgusting. This was set up from the very beginning to make her opinion look “stupid.” 

I have to agree - using racist jokes, even in the name of so-called “satire” will not do anything to actually end racism. it just gives white people an excuse to laugh at POC’s expense, and feel like they’re not being assholes for it. look at chapelle’s show. People may say that Suey is overreacting, but honestly, as she points out, sometimes you HAVE to overreact because it’s the only way to be heard. In America especially, (white) people are terrified of making black jokes, but Asian jokes are still free reign. Do you think Colbert’s team would have written a similar joke about black people? Or even Latinos? Casual racism against Asians is still considered OK, and it’s NOT OK, and we can debate what “satire” is all we want, but we shouldn’t debate an Asian’s woman’s right to be angry or simply fed up after a lifetime of having to deal with this bullshit. White liberals are the worst.

Like the quote says, white people really think that racism is “a feeling,” they REALLY don’t get it is a system that we all play a part in whether we want to or not. Ambushing Suey like this was not productive, it was not a teachable moment. All they wanted to do was make her look like an unreasonable Angry Asian woman, pitting her against two white men who were completely unequipped intellectually to handle the conversation in a useful way. “As a white man, I have no right to share my opinion…” How fucking patronizing.

White men are so fucking butthurt when they are called out for being white men, when the fact that they benefit from living in a patriarchal, white-run society is acknowledged. How dare she call them out, right? How dare she point out that they could never even begin to understand where she comes from because they’ve never fucking had to? This makes my blood boil. When I first saw the joke in question, guess what? I didn’t find it offensive. I couldn’t wrap my head around what was so wrong. Like others, I thought to myself, “but it’s ~satire~~~ right?”

But guess what? I am not an Asian woman.

The experience of an Asian woman is beyond my realm of understanding. So what did I do? I read, and I learned, and I unlearned the racist and anti-Asian thinking that we are all susceptible to, whites and POC alike, when we live in a racist society. I may not understand fully, but if there’s one thing I’m not going to do, I’m not going to ridicule or diminish anyone’s right to feel angry, to turn that anger into a joke. I have some Asian-American friends who have rolled their eyes and called this ridiculous.

I also can’t judge them for not finding the tweet offensive, for agreeing with their white liberal friends that it was “satire.” But there is a larger discussion to be had about anti-Asian attitudes that people are going out of their way to step over in order to intellectually belittle Suey Park and I am NOT HERE FOR IT. 

- Z

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