Thursday, July 09, 2009

What Kind of Asian are You?

Yesterday, some awesome guy posted a comment in response to my article about single Asian fathers which appeared in both the NW Asian Weekly's print copy and website.

I think I'm more disturbed by the fact that this singular person has decided to make themselves the gatekeeper to who can be considered an Asian or Asian-American. Ignoring the fact that he uses the term "flip" -- which is not only racist and derogatory, but also archaic -- what kind of follow up can someone have? I simply wanted to write a story about being a single father who happens to be from an ethnic group.

This does open up the floodgates of who people consider Asian. Up until the mid-to-late 90s, I've always been identified as "Asian" in legal documents. Afterwards, "Pacific Islander" started popping up in forms and applications, but seeing as how my family has roots in Chinese, Spanish and Indian cultures, I feel that "Asian" is an all encapsulating term. Also, I'm full Filipino, well as full as someone whose parents are both from Manila can be.

I guess, in the end, it really comes down from a source of miscommunication, ignorance and just plain ol' dumbness. But somehow, I'm still left dumbfounded.

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