July 27, 2015

"Tragedy of ‘golden’ daughter’s fall resonates with Asian immigrant children."

A WaPo headline. A family murder story is packaged as revelatory about "Asians." I wonder why this kind of crude stereotyping is considered acceptable in the mainstream press.
[Reporter Karen] Ho said the expectations placed on many Asian American children “have a huge long-term impact on your ability to withstand failure.” She added, “You just grow up chronically afraid. This buildup of lies is because Jennifer felt like the alternative was just unfathomable.”

“The more I learned about Jennifer’s strict upbringing,” Ho wrote, “the more I could relate to her. I grew up with immigrant parents who also came to Canada from Asia (in their case Hong Kong) with almost nothing, and a father who demanded a lot from me. My dad expected me to be at the top of my class, especially in math and science, to always be obedient, and to be exemplary in every other way. He wanted a child who was like a trophy — something he could brag about.”

54 comments:

rhhardin said...

Stereotyping is Bayes' theorem in action. It's wrong only for political correctness.

The math is good.

Asians ought to be good at stereotyping, in fact.

Birkel said...

The word "many" precludes an understanding of the stereotypical "all".

And the author's personal experiences cannot be a stereotype.

But I am decidedly uninterested in reading the whole thing.

Perhaps we can get another stereotypical lesson on shorts, as provided by a racist example more than 100 years old.

Brando said...

Asians (or "oreintals" if you want a more precise yet less PC term) have lagged far behind blacks when it comes to the backlash against racial stereotyping. We remember the shameful portrayal of a Japanese landlord by Mickey Rooney in "Breakfast at Tiffanys" but even more recently look at how Spielberg portrayed a Chinese boy as an Asian Steppin' Fetchit in "Temple of Doom". Try imagining a black equivalent in the mid-'80s. But it's still okay in leftish circles to stereotype and mock our far eastern friends!

Laslo Spatula said...

The daughter thinks she has it rough: try being Number One Son.


I am Laslo.

Laslo Spatula said...

Brando: I'll take your Temple of Doom Kid and raise you "Sixteen Candles'" Long Duk Dong.

(Insert Chinese cymbal crash here).


I am Laslo.

Fernandinande said...

crude stereotyping

Gasp! Everyone knows that all groups of people are exactly the same in every way. Because: diversity!

BDNYC said...

Althouse wonders why this crude stereotyping is acceptable. The answer is, WaPo knows that Asians won't riot and steal flat screens and sneakers. Asians have strong family structures, which can be stifling (as innumerable stories show), but the rigidness and the sense of familial shame do not allow for such foolishness. Before you can have that sort of discipline, of course, you must have intact families ... ahem.

Yes, I am stereotyping.

BDNYC said...

Frankly, I am wondering when people are going to start talking about "yellow privilege." The assumption that Asians are smart, especially at math and science, is widespread. Employers and potential clients are not immune to such crude stereotyping.

I demand reparations.

Misinforminimalism said...

"A family murder story is packaged as revelatory about 'Asians.'"

I don't recall that sort of caution when writing of the suicide of the former Hasid.

damikesc said...

...and Asians outperform other groups.

No chance that is tied with the upbringing.

Fernandinande said...

BDNYC said...
The assumption that Asians are smart, especially at math and science, is widespread.


That's because it's true, and that it's a measurement, not an assumption.

Laslo Spatula said...
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Brando said...

"...and Asians outperform other groups.

No chance that is tied with the upbringing."

Obviously. The reason Asians outperform is because the white power structure of racist oppression decided for some reason to hold back blacks and hispanics but elevate Asians above white people. It's part of some racist double secret shenanigans.

So when someone suggests that lagging by many blacks, whites and Hispanics might be due to upbringing and cultural factors you can ignore them--clearly it's institutional privilege.

Laslo Spatula said...

I once dated an Asian girl, and I gotta say that many of the stereotypes proved accurate.

She had impeccable manners, and treated me with the utmost deference and respect.

She was great at math, adept at Kung Fu, and a wizard at Ping Pong.

Indeed, I can still hear her sweet broken English when she would say to me during sex, "Now is butt-time, Mr. Laslo?"

Sadly, her Father found out she was dating a non-Asian and sent her back home to toil in the rice paddies beneath the blazing sun, with no hope of a future.

The memories, thus, are sweet-and-sour.

However, I WAS slightly disappointed to find out that her vagina wasn't sideways.

I miss you, My Sweet Yellow Swan.


I am Laslo.

rhhardin said...

How come stereotyping is bad and cliches are good. They both refer to the same part of the same machine.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

I grew up with immigrant parents who also came to Canada from Asia (in their case Hong Kong) with almost nothing, and a father who demanded a lot from me. My dad expected me to be at the top of my class, especially in math and science, to always be obedient, and to be exemplary in every other way. He wanted a child who was like a trophy — something he could brag about.”

Or perhaps he immigrated to a country with almost nothing, from a culture with a strong work ethic and familial ties, and wanted to impart that work ethic to his children and give them every advantage possible so that when they had children they would be able to give them considerably more than "almost nothing?"

Its just a thought.

EMD said...

but even more recently look at how Spielberg portrayed a Chinese boy as an Asian Steppin' Fetchit in "Temple of Doom".

Spielberg also worked with the actor Jonathan Ke Quan in 1986's The Goonies. His character's name was Data, and yes he was smart and technically-savvy. Those damn stereotypes, based in truths.

I enjoyed his performance as Short Round. I thought giving Indy a kid sidekick was fun.

Gabriel said...

There are what, 2 billion Asians in the world, and something like this has happened (to my knowledge) one time.

Yet, this is somehow an indictment of all Asians.

Compare and contrast what the media intends us to take away from the invariably lone wolf Muslim killers who are of course indicative in no way of the real religion and culture of actual Muslims.

rhhardin said...

What does Confucius say.

He who fling mud lose ground.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

And of course nothing is more shameful than wanting to be able to brag to your peers that your child is successfully coping with the world and is achieving worthwhile things, not just collecting participation trophies.

rhhardin said...

The crime of ching chong disparagement.

rhhardin said...

My high school Latin teacher made a joke about a chink in the armour, when that came up, God knows where. Caesar, Cicero or Virgil. I could google it and pretend to remember.

rhhardin said...

Who can forget the Wei Tu Lo plane crash repercussions, a lesson in playful fooling around in the PR department.

rhhardin said...

The hopeful upside of the nigger fraternity song scandal of a few months ago is that a generation of mind-dulling leftist education has not killed off the rebellious youth spirit.

fivewheels said...
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rhhardin said...

It was probably Virgil. It sounds like an odyssey thing.

fivewheels said...

Asian-Americans Defying Traditional Stereotypes

More And More Are Lazy, Stupid

Bruce Hayden said...

I think that the racism here is treating all Asians (or, maybe more accurately, all orientals) the same. My experience is that you find this with Chinese, an esp Vietamese, but less with Japanese, Filipino, etc. Kinda like throwing all Europeans together when discussing finances, instead of accepting that the Greeks are much less prudent than the Germans, which is why the latter continue to subsidize the former.

MayBee said...

It's only ok to stereotype white people, and especially white men.

rhhardin said...

White men aren't stereotyped so much as disparaged.

They're still the accomplishers.

Bruce Hayden said...

I mentioned the Vietamese. What was weird to me, living in the DC area throughout the latter 1970s, was that all the 7/11s even in heavily Black areas, were run by just-off-the-boat Vietamese. It would inevitably be a multi-generational thing, with the youngest generation helping the older generations work on their English. Seeing what they all did, I am not surprised that there continues to be so much pressure on their youth.

Charlie Martin said...

I wonder why this kind of crude stereotyping is considered acceptable in the mainstream press.

That's easy. "Asians", with their record of assimilation, achievement, and success, aren't a real minority.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said...I wonder why this kind of crude stereotyping is considered acceptable in the mainstream press.

I don't believe you actually wonder, Professor. I believe you understand perfectly well that in the Media it's ok to stereotype some groups, refer to group differences, etc, but career poison to do the same to other groups.

The outcomes and experiences of certain minority groups don't fit the Narrative, and those groups therefore can be treated differently from other minority groups.

J. Farmer said...
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J. Farmer said...

This habit of placing high demands on children and relying on familial shame to enforce it is very prevalent in East Asian cultures and is a big component of why they often excel academically. This is why I always find it a bit comical when politicians and the like always promote some stupid scheme like common core or higher teacher salaries as strategies for "raising test scores."

Fernandinande said...
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Fernandinande said...

J. Farmer said...
This habit of placing high demands on children and relying on familial shame to enforce it is very prevalent in East Asian cultures and is a big component of why they often excel academically.


No.

"There are a number of reasons to doubt this [the culture theory]. For one, the sociological literature doesn’t seem to show it. As Stanley Sue and Sumie Okazaki pointed out in their 1991 American Psychologist paper, Asian American Educational Achievements: A Phenomenon in Search of an Explanation, the parenting styles and values found in East Asian-American homes tend to correlate with lower test scores when they are found in white homes."
...
"Contrary to “culture” theory, the ethnic academic gaps are almost identical for transracially adopted children, and to the extent they are different they go in the opposite direction predicted by culture theory."

Fernandinande said...

Charlie Martin said...
That's easy. "Asians", with their record of assimilation, achievement, and success, aren't a real minority.


It's almost as if the word "minority" is one of those dog-whistle codes for something else ...
"How the Asians Became White" (Volokh)

William said...

A lot of the Vietnamese refugees were, in fact, ethnic Chinese. The Viet Commies ethnically cleansed the Chinese minority in South Vietnam and confiscated their capital. This is one of the many great leftist crimes that are not recognized as crimes. On the Washington Mall, they should erect a tomb to the Unknown Communist Victim.

Fernandinande said...

How the Asians became white (Volokh again, different article)

"The New York Times Bits blog reports:
'Google on Wednesday released statistics on the makeup of its work force, providing numbers that offer a stark glance at how Silicon Valley remains a white man’s world.'

But wait — just a few paragraphs down, the post notes that non-Hispanic whites are 61 percent of the Google work force, slightly below the national average. (That average, according to 2006-10 numbers, is 67 percent.) Google is thus less white than the typical American company.
...
[citing a different op-ed]Calling Asians white also creates new lines, possibly very dangerous ones. “White” has stopped meaning Caucasian, imprecise as this term has always been, and has started to mean “those racial groups that have made it.”"

IOW, the dog-whistle code word.

buwaya said...

"The daughter thinks she has it rough: try being Number One Son."
Chinese daughters are indeed more harassed/less respected than sons. That's the culture.
As me about Chinese mother-in-laws, son-in-laws and daughter-in-laws. Can get ugly.

The culture of achievement is universal and has nothing to do with being in the US or Canada. You see exactly the same thing across Asia. Its amazing how parochial these "educated" newspaper people are.

As for the article, its typical. I have been seeing these things pop up in the press for 20+ years. Its an attractive man-bites-dog story, to a certain type of reporter/reader, and like anything of the sort it is meant to denigrate the successful Asians (nearly all of them). Yeah, they beat everyone but they are cheating/suffer uselessly/are sad anyway so are not really successful, etc.

What we have here is a culture war between the liberal left and actual Asian peoples. The interesting thing is that the left does not have much to do with actual Asians for the most part, rarely including, talking to or acknowledging them even in universities full of Asians. When they do face off, real honest to God Asians and the liberal left, such as, among such rare venues, in the cockpit of the SF School Board, you can feel the waves of hate.

You will also find Asians that, honestly speaking, one would have to call Quislings. These are the people who are often employed to betray their own by defending discrimination against Asians, or play up stuff like this article does.

There are Asians and there are Asians. Filipinos are not Chinese, etc. Family dynamics varies between cultures (and between families).

Filipinos for instance are not world-beaters in the Chinese academic sense, because they aren't so driven. On the other hand Filipino family discipline tends to be just as rigid, if not as harsh. Filipinos are socialized as team players, as parts of a whole, and don't have the individual drive. As a population, in the US these days average Filipino academic performance matches US white performance, but doesn't exceed it as do the Chinese. The same applies to professional success. Nearly all Filipinos in the US achieve a comfortable middle class living, and very rarely (less so than the Chinese probably) misbehave. Filipino gangs and criminals are rare, and you will find very few in prison. However they very rarely achieve positions of leadership, nor are they often at the cutting edge of anything.

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
Nearly all Filipinos in the US achieve a comfortable middle class living, and very rarely (less so than the Chinese probably) misbehave.


Your description sounds a lot like a Filipino friend from high-school, except he "misbehaved" more than average (never got arrested or anything).

His dad had survived the Bataan Death March, which is more interesting considering that two others guys in our "gang" were Japanese and half-Japanese; I have a feeling that nowadays the Diversity Specialists in our schools would be encouraging the Filipino guy to hate the Japanese guys, rather than hanging out with them.

Fritz said...

A friend's family had all gone to Cornell. One of his sisters faked acceptance, then moved to Ithica and continued to collect money from Dad. It was a couple of years before one of her sisters-in-law caught on and did some digging to out her.

Just ordinary white folk.

buwaya said...

Filipino attitudes towards the Japanese are interesting.
I am speaking of the old country, in the US it is more or less the same.
Unlike many other Asians Filipinos have largely forgiven the Japanese.
I don't know what cultural differences made this possible, but it is so.
Maybe its a Christian thing, that works better than with Korean and Chinese Christians because of the universal and ingrained values.

You just cant get a good ethnic hate going against the Japanese anymore.

I have a story about my grandmother that I should probably properly write up someday.
Of course the family survived the Japanese occupation and Battle of Manila, where the Japanese garrison tried to massacre the whole population of the city. She had a great deal to hold against the Japanese, personally and collectively, and she did. She would not hear of anything Japanese for decades.
One day, thirty years after, she was sitting in the garden one afternoon when a Japanese backpacker - a student on a wanderjahre, as some Japanese did - came by and she got to chatting with him. They went over the war, frankly and calmly, and its events and guilt. That night at dinner she declared that she had decided to forgive the Japanese.
I think nearly everyone eventually came to the same decision.

J. Farmer said...

@Fernandinande:

"No."

Fair enough. I would retract the word "big" from that sentence. I still think it's a component. And I totally agree with your link. I am a regular reader of the Unz Review site and am pretty much a Bell Curve kind of guy.

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
That night at dinner she declared that she had decided to forgive the Japanese.


My mom never stopped hating - or disliking, at least - Germans.

Riot after Chinese teachers try to stop pupils cheating
"What should have been a hushed scene of 800 Chinese students diligently sitting their university entrance exams erupted into siege warfare after invigilators tried to stop them from cheating."

MadisonMan said...

From Fernandiande's link:

We want fairness. There is no fairness if you do not let us cheat.

When tests matter.

eddie willers said...

My mom never stopped hating - or disliking, at least - Germans.

Shortly after college, I was working for JVC (Japanese company) and driving an Audi (German car).

My father wondered who won the war.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

"My father wondered who won the war."

I remember reading a science fiction story back in the 80s with the premise that the U.S. government, in addition to two atomic bombs, has the ability to send one person forward in time a few decades for just a few minutes and that it can do so only once. In order to decide if dropping the atomic bombs is warranted they decide to send someone to the future to determine if the Allies or Japan won the war.

As I said, the time traveler has just a few minutes, during which time he sees Sony electronics, Honda cars, etc. He is under strict orders to not interact with anyone or even be seen if possible (must avoid possibly creating a paradox) so he reports back that the Japanese won.

Milwaukie guy said...

My son is half-Asian and we are both single and living together and fully admit to having a little Yellow Fever.

Milwaukie guy said...

Also, my father-in-law, Willie Wessels, and his older brother were in the Dutch colonial army in Indonesia and were both captured by the Imperial Army in early '42. [They were creole Dutch-Indonesians who were mainly Dutch speaking.] My f-i-l was almost sent to the Bridge Over the River Kwai but the merchant vessel that was to take them there was torpedoed.

As everyone knows, the Anglos were treated brutally on the, what was it, Thai-Burma military railway[?], but for Asian POWs building the road bed through the jungle it was a death sentence.

Even after emigrating to L.A., it was some decades before owning a Japanese brand car would be accepted.

Milwaukie guy said...

I just realized I had never told that story to my son so I just popped into his room to tell him, adding, if it was not for that American submarine, you might not be here. Heavy.

LTMG said...

Read Evelyn Lao's "Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid" to understand better the kinds of pressure Pan endured.

Blue@9 said...

I'm of Asian descent, immigrated here in '77, and many of the stereotypes seem true, but you have to remember that the people who immigrated here were self-selecting. My dad is an accountant, a grad from the best university in Korea, and he moved the family here specifically for the better educational opportunities for his kids. This is a typical motivation for immigrants, but do you think everyone back in Korea, Japan, or China thinks this way? I assure you there are plenty of Asians who are lazy, unmotivated, bad at math, etc. Look at the Indian immigrant community-- you might think all Indians are natural enterpreneurs who are great at computers. But then you read about Indians in India and it's a whole different story. Our impression of Mexican immigrants is skewed because our geographical proximity allows the peasants and dregs to cross over. It'd be different if they were an ocean away and only college-educated Mexicans could come over.