In this brief article, a half-Japanese American college student reflects on what being Asian American is. In particular, she speaks about the model minority myth and the expectations others have on her in school. She states that she would be labeled with “foreign-ness and high grades.” Therefore, the model minority myth has continues to exist in the current generation. To add on to the stereotype of Asian-Americans being foreign, the writer says she felt isolated from the customs of her grade-school mates because she would be enjoying a brown rice ball among a lunch table of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Somehow she felt different in the sense of identity because for her, she was the one who had to conceal what she was – she says she ate her brown rice ball as quickly as possible so no one would notice it’s uncleanliness or odor. For this reason, I see that the writer notices these myths/stereotypes but does not see them as an obstacle but more of a step towards understanding and empowerment. Furthermore, the writer speaks about the role Asian Americans have in the political system. She writes that Asian-Americans are seen as ” apolitical and, as a consequence, suffers from not having much of a say in changing or adopting new laws that are beneficial to its members” to show that political involvement is crucial in creating visibility within society. Additionally, the writer includes that because of immigration laws and such, several Asian-American communities are in fear of deportation etc., so there is this conflict where there is a need to be visible but if they are perhaps too visible, they could be arrested or something similar.
In this music video, the newer generation of Asian-Americans rap about the histories and impact of inequality on Asians in the U.S. I think this song reflects on the disconnect between the current generation and their ancestors. For example, the title of the song is “Where’d you go?” which probably means that some of the newer generation are unaware of what their grandparents, for example, had to endure in order to provide for their families, especially with the high amount of inequality and lack of many civil rights. Furthermore, the newer generation have this disconnect with the older generation because they are not confronted with the same lack of equality in society and politics.