How soon is too soon to talk to our daughters about perceptions of our people in a race-conscious society? Think Kindergarten is too early for this “heavy” topic? Think again.
Some things never change. Seemingly, from time immemorial, recess holds firm as the place and time when life-shaping occurrences unfold, and the people we grow to become are undoubtedly influenced by the things we experience during this free time period called Recess.
Even a harsh life in South Korea is far better than the one they left behind in China's northeastern provinces of Jilin, Heilongjiang or Liaoning. And with the remittances they send home, the workers help improve the lot of their families.
Korean Chinese "make an economic contribution in sectors most Koreans don't want to work in but need to be covered in society," says Yoon In-jin, sociology professor at Korea University. "Their incorporation as foreign labor is smoother because they speak the language and are considered from the same race."
But I think it's most worth noting that "I forgot Obama was black"–in all its iterations–is something that white people should stop saying, if only because it's really dishonest.
He's white, and while he's as aware as I might hope for someone to be about racial issues, ultimately, he doesn't see race everywhere like I do. He saw that interaction with the ticket agent as a friendly interaction, an innocent curiosity. I saw it framed in nothing but a racial context. My skin color prompted him to try and use Japanese with me, despite having just used English with my boyfriend. When I chose not to engage, I saw his turning to my boyfriend to ask what I said as him stereotyping me as a quiet, demure Asian woman who spoke broken English at best. I finally spoke up because I hated playing into that stereotype. Responding didn't prove to be a better scenario for me either, but I so often feel trapped by these scenarios, where common courtesy with curious strangers makes me feel like I can't point out how offended I was by that interaction. I'm just too sensitive, they'd say.
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