Reader Mail from an Aussie Asian

"Just dropping a line to say that I've been enjoying the Alpha-Asian blog, especially the FunTwo guitar clips, the Korean American Hitchhikers and The Better Asian Man blog links. It's really interesting to read about American/Western Asian cultures and thoughts. I'm always impressed at how Americans are very good at marketing and self-promotion, whereas the Asian nations tend to be more humble and noble. I'm in Australia, and our Aussie culture tends to be in between the two.

"The thing about being Asian here is that it's not as distinct as (I believe) it is in the US. We don't get the negative stereotyping in the media as much as what I've heard and seen in the U.S. Maybe our culture is generally tolerant with the mixture of different backgrounds. BTW, this is generally true for Sydney city. There are other places where the residents are not as tolerant or friendly, but that's alright."

-Steve, Sydney


My Answer: Glad you like the blog, Steve. Feel free to post comments or email some interesting stuff you might find on the web. I tend to post positive stuff about Asians and humorous stuff too. Anything that Asians are creating and making headlines about. There are a lot of reactionary and negative Asian American blogs and websites, so I try to present stuff that is a little more happy-go-lucky. Nothing wrong with pointing out and combating injustices against Asians, because if we don't do it, non-Asians sure as hell won't. But I like creating my own reality, one where Asians aren't just seen as Asians and do stuff that's cool.

It's interesting that you note the U.S. is more INtolerant of Asians than Sydney. I've never been to Sydney, so I'll take your word for it. I've met a couple of Aussie Asians, and I get mixed experiences. This one girl I'm friends with just raves about Australia and has that Aussie pride. Much stronger than her Asian pride. Then I met this dude who just hated his time in Australia. He seemed very bitter and a little scary. He must have gone through some racist shit.

Asian pride seems to be much stronger here in the U.S. I don't know if it's my imagination, but there seems to much more cross-Asian unity among the generations born and raised in the U.S. We have Asian American Studies programs and courses in the colleges, not Asian Studies mind you. Hell, we have graduate programs in Asian American Studies. Granted, there are only 2 in the nation, but still, that's something.

Although, I must say that Asians in Canada seem to have a better experience. I've been to Canada, and it is a much more tolerant place. Their media represents Asians much more. The U.S. media and Hollywood presents Asians in a negative light, if at all.

Anyway, an interesting series of documentaries on the Chinese Diaspora is a TV show called Chinese Restaurant. Essentially this dude travels the world and visits Chinese restaurants in the most remote places he can find, places like South America, India, Africa, Israel, Norway and Turkey.
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