The Fairy Princess’s wings are fluttering a bit slower today, because, MANAA (Media Action Network for Asian Americans) via their founder, Guy Aoki, have taken it upon themselves to decide whether or not “Hapas” count.
Randall no last name, at Rafu Shimpo is giving this issue a wider bigoted stance by thoughtfully expanding on this topic with this amazing title – ‘Does an Actress Count As An Asian American if She Doesn’t Look it?” by Randall.
Does she ‘count‘?
Old Rafu (Randall, no last name listed) read Mr. Aoki’s column of bombastic bullshit and decided he would conduct his own very scientific experiment, with his vast knowledge of mixed race people and try and decide whether or not Actress, Chloe Bennett of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ‘counted’ as Asian American – he asked his wife.
She said no.
Who get’s to decide? THEY do.(?)
Apparently, Hapas – of which the Fairy Princess is one,
we are the unwanted of the Asian American Community. Oh, what IS that word that they use so frequently with derision? What IS it?
“We have a growing dilemma with Hapa actors. If they can pass for white, that’s often what their characters are. Yet the networks count them as Asian. As I’ve told them before, while that benefits their company to show how “diverse” they are, it doesn’t benefit the community if no one knows they’re part Asian.’ Guy Aoki (article)
A growing dilemma.
Well, yes – the Asian American population IS growing, but the numbers are not those of the “Purebloods’ to use Harry Potter terminology, it’s us Half-Breed Muggles that are cause for concern. According to Bloomberg, mixed race people identifying as Asian and Caucasian has INCREASED by 87 per cent in the last decade.
Oh my goodness, whatever WILL those “Purebloods” do if we get out of our cages? Although 87 per cent.…guess we are out.
WHY would we, the Asian American community, allow this kind of destructive thinking?
Everyone would rather protest MISS SAIGON, instead of looking at the intrinsic racism of the Asian American community and it’s way of having to put everyone in a box? Oh, wait of COURSE you would rather protest MISS SAIGON, it has a number where it addresses the issue of mixed race children.
Are ‘we’ really NOT going to reach out and slap MANAA and Rafu Shimpo for what is, actually, hate speech. It’s not any different than what Hitler used to say – are we going to, now as they did in Nazi Germany, start measuring our features for the purity of our traits? And if we, the Hapas, do not measure up to ‘their’ standards, we have to, forever after, be banished from the Asian American community?
No more noodles for us Hapas? That’s it?
It seems harsh. It seems….misguided.
What THINKING person would DO or SAY this? Who could endorse this way of thinking?
Norah Jones, you are mixed race – thoughts?
What IF….our hair is just a bit lighter?
What IF….our eyes are different?
What IF, we wind up on TV with millions of people dreaming of us at night?
But perhaps, perhaps Hapas are not just focused on the small screen? Perhaps our plans of decimation of the Asian American Community go BEYOND the television, BEYOND the Broadway….maybe we are thinking BIGGER! Oh NO!
Wait a MINUTE, wait a MINUTE – what IF some of us become film stars?
WHAT IF….Hapa Actors take an even BOLDER STEP and change their look FOR A ROLE?
What IF….we decide to celebrate the OTHER side of our heritage and take a role THAT way?
What IF we become SUPERMODELS?
WHAT IF…we go into MUSIC and have the WHOLE WORLD dancing and singing along with US?
WHAT IF WE ARE CROWNED QUEEN OF THE UNIVERSE???????????
What’s that? The Fairy Princess is being too sensitive over SOMEONE ELSE deciding if she, AS A HUMAN, counts?
Maybe I should lighten up? Watch some TV?
To sum up what MANAA and Rafu are saying – Hapas do not count UNLESS a storyline is provided to fully expand upon the Asian-ness of their character on a show, which should be done the very FIRST time they hit the screen and repeated each and EVERY time they are seen.
What do they want, for the character to say, “Well, as my Chinese Mom said….” when they begin a scene?
When they begin EVERY scene?
Hello “Number One Son” part Deux.
So that the Asian Americans at home can feel comfortable. So that the Asian Americans at home – sitting on their tukus, – can point to the screen and feel better about the fact that if they find the Actor or Actress ‘hot’ that it is ONLY because the Actor/Actress is Asian? Because why? You are afraid of finding people attractive who are not Asian?
So as a Hapa Actor, we need to have a full array of t-shirts with our Mom or Dad’s photo emblazoned across them in order to ‘count’? And we need to appear IN them every time we are in public?
So me, I do not count – and the people above do not ‘count’.
But my son, who is 1/2 Korean, Chinese, Irish, & Welsh, would count – but only if he stands with his Korean American Dad, but not with his Eurasian Mom. And they would totally not count my adorable nieces because they are Hapa but have blue eyes?
I should have Russell Wong kick each and every one of your asses – twice!
Dear Purebloods – let me tell you something straight – the ONLY people that need to ‘count’ Hapas, is the US Census. Hapa actors are under NO obligation to wave an Asian banner every time they appear.
The fact that you cannot tell what a Hapa person looks like means, actually, that you are cloistered in a limited world, where you do not get the full benefit of what it means to be an American, what it means to be a World Citizen, and what it means to be a Human.
If you are a mixed race person of a certain age, it is because two people came together despite what society told them, and celebrated their differences and their mutual humanity. And if you are a mixed race person of a certain age, you have been THROUGH IT. So have your Parents. Your entire Family.
I salute you. I SEE you.
We are mixed race people, and we get to reap ALL, repeat ALL, the benefits of ALL our Heritages. We do not CARE if you are not comfortable with US, because you have made it your LIFE’S WORK to deny that we exist. Hapa Children have LONG been shunned – historically – by Asian Communities, so it is with GREAT humor that I tell you why you are so worried…
Because WE are Asian America 4.0, and we, like ALL upgrades, are making the Asian American community faster, and more efficient.
This makes you afraid? Well go ahead then, go ahead and be VERY afraid.
In closing, I want to address the Network Angle – that they count Hapa actors on their Diversity ‘report card’. They have every right to do so.
I say that as a former Vice Chair of the Asian American Subcommittee of SCREEN ACTORS GUILD, and as a former SAG National EEOC member.
Heritage is Heritage. If you declare yourself, if you ‘come out’ as Asian American, then you ARE Asian American. You ‘get’ to count, and you are counted. I count you, and so should the Networks.
Drop the mic and take us home, Audra McDonald….
MANAA and Rafu Shimpo can Kiss my Hapa Fan Tan Fannie!
(And BTW, I worked with MANAA Member, Aki Aleong years ago – and Mr. Aoki – HIS name was changed. So if you are going to go after Chloe Bennett for the same thing, why don’t you ask Aki why he changed his)