Author: Sierra Nakano
Asian American: Does that make me Asian or American?
You, my friend, treat me as if I am full Japanese,
when in reality, I am only half. Therefore, you say,
I am a minority and I can feel the implications
of racism, I perceive the threats and discriminations
as an Asian American in this white world
and I should not stand for any of it. I should
argue the rights I have and mock those
with lighter skin, those who are only attacked
with prejudice and not racism because white
is not a race. As an Asian American, I should
stand with those who look like me, like you,
whose race is fully Asian. But, alas,
my friend, I am only half.
I am only half. Do you see my German side? Do you see
that I am white, what you perceive as white,
which is everyone in the western hemisphere? Do you hate me,
my friend, for my Nikes or even for being voted
team captain? Did I get those things because I am white? Would
you hate my mother if I invited you into my home? Dislike
my grandparents because they were not refugees like
your parents? Did you even know that my grandfather changed
his last name when he immigrate to this country
so that he did not seem out of place? Did your parents and my grandparents
not have anything in common? Do I not look white
just because of my dark hair and brown eyes? Besides,
what are “white people” if not a race?
And, my friend, who are “white people?”
Dutch? German? English? Spanish? Canadian?
You hate the “drama,” “white people” “stir up”
and everything they say…but why? Because
they are privileged? All of them?
When we chat, do you realize who you
are talking to? Who you are talking about?
Oh you have a white friend? Never mind
all that nonsense then, my friend.