Chicago Tribune: Rejecting the model in ‘model minority’

Monday, May 05, 2008

There's a good essay written by A.R. Sakaeda down at the Chicago Tribune for their Exploring Race series:

I have a confession to make: I am a lousy model minority. In fact, I'm pretty sure that the majority isn't going to want me as the model for any minority, let alone my own people.

Unlike the mythical model minority, I am not quiet and polite. I am often loud, sometimes abrasive and I use the F-word a lot. (My mother doesn't read anything on the Internet, so I don't have to worry about repercussions from that last confession.) My math skills are only average. I do not own a calculator with a graphing function.

If I'm a lousy model minority, I'm an even lousier stereotypical Asian woman. The geisha and the "China doll" are deferential, obedient and demure. Me? I don’t own a kimono. I can’t bat my eyes. I cut off all my silky, ink-black hair because I got sick of people touching it. (Don’t touch my HAIR!) I even enjoy drinking beer out of the bottle and listening to loud rock music.

And for some reason I keep forgetting to acknowledge the superior rightness of men. It just keeps slipping my mind somehow. Nobody, my husband in particular, ever describes me as sweet or passive. My vows went something like, "I promise to love you because you understand that 'obey' would choke the lifeblood from my very existence.
Nice. Read more here.