The Lie of White Innocence

Got an email from Ankh about Chauncey Devega's latest essay.


What do I think? Well, I definitely agree with his points. Also, for whatever reason, I'm still surprised whenever I see someone else speak that honestly about racism. One thing was kind of weird though. "Schadenfreude" is when you take pleasure in someone else's misfortune. I'm not exactly sure if that term matches his point. I agree with his assertion that the vast majority of whites, liberal and conservative, are attempting to define the issue of racism as a problem with "a few bad apples." However, I don't think "anti-racist schadenfreude" is the best term to describe that situation.

Semantics aside, I've definitely come across my fair share of that sort of obfuscation. The problem, of course, is that not only are those distorters completely ignoring systemic (a.k.a. institutional or structural) racism, they are also creating a kind of "racism whipping boy" to which they divert culpability. For those who don't know, back in medieval times, whenever the prince did something bad, instead of whipping the prince, they would whip a poor peasant boy. They did this because, in their minds, the prince was too good and innocent to be whipped. Quite a fitting analogy if you think about it. The only part that doesn't quite fit is the culpability of the whipping boys: the prince's whipping boy most likely did not deserve his fate, whereas racism's whipping boys (i.e. the klansmen and skinheads) definitely deserve some of the culpability.

Where does all this lead me? It leads me to a previously discovered insight: One of the obstacles preventing the end of racism is the ability of whites to indulge in privilege at the expense of People of Color, engage in subtle racism, and sometimes even commit blatant racism all while maintaining the lie of white innocence. The whipping boys of racism play a significant part in this illusion. Most white people see themselves as being too good and innocent to be guilty of racism; it's always someone else who is the "real racist." This is what makes mighty whitey films (and, to a certain extent, Tim Wise's focus on white allies) a huge problem. They watch films like The Help and then see themselves as the heroic white person without having actually done anything heroic themselves. There's nothing wrong with identifying with fictional or real white allies if the white person in question actually does something to oppose white hegemony. But too often stories of white anti-racism, fake or real, simply allow whites to feel good about themselves, serving only to maintain the lie of white innocence.

James Hong, George Chen, and Weihan Wang Matter Too

And let's not forget it.

L to R: Weihan Wang, George Chen, and James Hong
The parents of the three college students who were stabbed said it took them weeks to muster the courage to speak publicly about the killings. They said they finally did so in a joint interview to air their frustration with authorities’ handling of the case and the scant information that has been provided.

The three families — all Chinese immigrants who said they came to the United States for a better life — said that they are disturbed by a culture that seems more interested in the killer than in their sons. They also are angered by public-health and legal systems that they say value the rights of the mentally ill, including Rodger’s, over those who may become their victims.

...The three families are lobbying the news media to shift their attention to the victims. After ABC News announced June 9 that Barbara Walters would be coming out of retirement to interview the killer’s father, the families banded together and e-mailed a producer June 13
. (Source)
I dare you to Google Elliot Rodger right now.

Click "News" at the top. Notice how the first few articles are basically this same story copied and pasted a few times over. Then scroll down to see all the articles about Elliot Rodger and namely his father (notice: not his mother), who has become some sort of macabre celebrity (which I knew he would. He may complain about his son being a mass murderer and all, but if I understand the history of this man's career correctly, Elliot's killing spree couldn't have happened at a better time).


Count the (Race) Fail

You'd think I'd know by now not to click on random videos on YouTube, but I just can't seem to help myself.  Curiosity got the better of me in this instance, and I got exactly what I deserved.  Because I really should have known better.  I was flabbergasted, offended and morbidly curious all at the same time.

While I can appreciate the attempt to discuss race and interracial dating in an honest, straightforward manner, I don't see what's helpful or thought-provoking about this particular discussion.  It seems to want to present itself as an open-minded conversation about what can admittedly be a touchy subject, but it really comes off as uninformative and a bit ridiculous. They don't really say anything substantive unless you include the stereotypes about black men being well-endowed, Asian women being submissive wives, using the word "exotic" to describe non-white people, the hotness of Latin lovers, and a somewhat creepy fixation on AW/WM pairings.  If I could insert a "mind blown" gif here, I would.

And I couldn't help but notice that no black folks were included in this discussion.  But then again, maybe it's best that they weren't.  Because this conversation is filled with all kinds of nope. 

We definitely need to have discussions about race in this country.  Many, many discussions.  But not like this.

*Cross-posted on The Black Girls Club


New "Colorless World" issue out now

It's back!!!  Issue #3 is hot off the press and and filled with all sorts goodies.  Take a peek at what's in store for readers:

As usual, Rabz continues to provide recipes for folks interested in Blasian Cuisine.  I actually want to try this one.  I hope mine will look just as pretty.


The Narrative Nods to Gowe (@GoweHipHop)

I was introduced to Gowe's music when I was searching YouTube for music videos of Travis Graham.  My search led me to the first video which I'm about to post. His entrance alone onto this track sold me on his style immediately.


Feeling Defeminized

Long time, no post.

Actually, I have had the idea for this post in my head for quite awhile but I haven't had the chance to write it until now. However, I think it's pretty timely considering the recent comment by Joan Rivers about First Lady Michelle Obama being manly and the fact that people actually believe clearly photoshopped pictures of her which claim to show that she is in fact a man (born with the name Michael) are real.

When is society going to stop perpetuating the absurd belief that black women have no right to be womanly? That we somehow cannot claim female as our gender even when our DNA says we are? Why, as a black women, do I feel that we are grouped into this category of not-quite-female but not-quite-male, as if we're some kind of alien being with some traces of female features but are "unpredictable", "scary", "ugly", "hypersexual", and "manly".

I feel the answers to my questions are summed up beautifully in the TransGriot article:
"If you have a group of women [white women] that you put on a societal pedestal as the paragons of beauty, fertility and the femininity gold standard that all women should aspire to, then it stands to reason that you would set up a group of women [black women] as the ones to not emulate." 
Hence, we are currently still at a point where black women represent this negative otherness. Unfortunately, I find that this is an idea which has been exported from the Western world. When I am out and about in Taiwan, I often hear comments which imply that I'm unfeminine and that the effort I spend on my looks is basically comical. Sometimes, I find that people attempt to discount my femininity by simply calling me a man. I'm no model but I certainly don't look male, haha.


PLUS or MINUS: Korea Launching First Plus Size Magazine.

"To all the girls that think you're fat because you're not a size zero, you're the beautiful one, its society who's ugly." ~ Marilyn Monroe

Korea is launching a new magazing geared to its plus-sized readers called 66100 (yes there is meaning behind this name). The title refers to Korean clothing sizes that are considered "undesirable" according to the creator of the magazine. Size 66 is an XL in women's size and 100 is XL for men...but wait is this a women's magazine or a men's magazine...unisex? Huh? Anyway the founder of the magazine is a 28 year old who understands the plight of Korean women and the extreme difficulties of finding clothes that fit. She is a size 88...way over the "undesirable" size. She is Kim Ji-yang and is 5'5 and 154 pounds...which is XXL in Korea.

"Fan Base", an Asian African Drama Project in Progress

A while back, when we were recruiting new writers, Eunice Apia, filmmaker, producer and founder of Mustrd Seed Media, reached out to us about Fan Base, an AMBW series she's currently trying to film and needs our helping funding.  We agreed to assist her with promoting her project, and she was kind enough to answer a few questions about her work.

Miss Apia, thank you so much for reaching out to the Blasian Narrative about your project, Fan Base. How did you find us?

I believe the first time I heard about Blasian Narrative was through surfing the net while reading different blogs written by BWAM (Black Women Asian men) writers. One of the blogs I stumbled on was called 'Jagged Noodles'. It led me to the Blasian Narrative.

LOL - Jagged Noodles is actually one of Narrators! He’s currently on hiatus. So what drew you to the AMBW world in the first place?

To be honest with you, I'm now heading towards my mid thirties and want to finally start preparing to settle down. I want to form a serious romantic relationship and even start a family. I want the family life that I believe is offered most times within the Asian community. I am not saying that Asian have a perfect household, but they are known to be committed to family, most times than not. I want that for my children and myself. In other words, I find Asian men to be very desirable in many ways.


"Daos" Character Profiles

As you know, Middle Child Press is the owner and sister-blog of the Blasian Narrative.  Co-founded and co-run by me and Amaya Radjani, we've tried to bring our own flair and our own flavor to the online literary world.

For quite a while now, Amaya and I have presented a Free Fiction Series.  To reward loyal fans and readers who've donated to our press or bought our books and overall supported our blogs, we create original stories - not fanfiction - which they can enjoy instantly, online, at no charge (no plagiarizing, please).  Not only has this been enjoyable for readers, it's been exceedingly inspirational and motivating for us as writers.  The main reason is that this particular form of storytelling is interactive; comments made on Chapter One tend to influence Chapter Two.

Daos is one of our most recent installments.  After watching the Philippine drama Amaya (yes, yes, I know), I was immediately inspired by actors Mikael Daez ("Lumad") and Aljur Abrenica
 ("Dayaw").  On my Dark & Twisty blog, after viewing some amazing pictures of Daez in particular, commenters jokingly suggested I should a write a story about a detective who investigates the paranormal and goes undercover as a stripper.


Blasian Love in Nightingales

As you may (or may not) know, my second book, Nightingales: CRASH!!! is set for publication next week.  This is a supernatural mystery series featuring five women of color who join forces to figure out what the hell is going on in their apartment building. Each lady is armed with a unique set of skills. Two of the women are black, and one is in a Blasian relationship, and as such, is featured here on the Narrative.

Fans of my blog, Musings in the Dark, know the genesis of this project (*cough Ankh cough*), and thus also know that these characters have been dreamcasted.  So if you will, allow me to introduce you to Monica and her beau Chris.