New York Times (via ordietryin)
YES YES YES.
And honestly, that’s true for most non-White non-Christian heteronormative groups. It pervades media, classrooms, policy, and most importantly, the views of “normal Americans.”
My neighborhood is heavily Mediterranean immigrants, with the latest mass influx coming after the Balkan wars. The difference between how people act toward the Bulgarians versus the Egyptians is nauseating. It doesn’t matter if a Russian girl almost never speaks English while the Yemeni man is nearly fluent and profoundly well-spoken for the amount of time he’s known the language—he is treated as odd, un-assimilatable, not in concert with “our” values, etc., while she is treated with indulgence or, at worst, non-attention.
Totally. A white European newcomer’s acculturation or command of the language will always be perceived as better than say, the articulate Egyptian, regardless of what is actually said. As a visible minority, I often get one reaction over the phone (before they hear my ‘ethnic’ name) and a different one face-to-face.
How do White People Perceive Racism in 2011?
Model Minority Myth: Sticky Floor and Bamboo Ceiling Truth?
The ‘model minority’ myth owes its inception in no small part to the gaming of the University of Chicago’s 1924 Survey of Race Relations, engineered by influential members of the Chinese and Japanese immigrant communities.
While Wesley Yang brought our attention to the Bamboo Ceiling, here’s an excerpt from Sylvie Kim’s response in Hyphen:
Yes, the Bamboo ceiling sucks for an engineer who will never make it to management level. But it probably sucks more for the Asian immigrant who has to dust that Bamboo ceiling after emptying out the wastebaskets and mopping the floors. While earning no more than $12,000 a year may be a badge of Model Minority defiance for some Asian Americans, it’s a stark economic reality for others.
If it wasn’t for the following true tale that just happened to a friend, I would have drowned out the chatter and let it go.
One of the main reasons I’ve been so frustrated about job hunting is because I got rejected even though I thought I did really well on the interview. On the other hand, a classmate who also went for an interview thought she had bombed it but ended up getting the position. The thing I can’t get over is that when I found out she was also going for the position, I already felt like I wasn’t going to have a good chance at the position, mostly because she was white. The irony is that she just recently came to America from Europe while I’ve lived in America ever since I could remember. I know it’s a bit too simplistic to say that and really I have nothing that shows race may have been involved in the decision making process. I just can’t help but get so angry and frustrated at a situation that does seem to have race involved.
Never mind the Bamboo Ceiling, he got stuck on the Sticky Floor.
I am truly touched and humbled by the response from you, the tumblr community, on the “…from Seattle” post. Kudos to Stephanie Santiano who published the original article in Glimpse.
To borrow a phrase: Power to the People.
But where are you really from?
Here’s one of my favourite “Where are you really from?” stories. The gal is of Korean ethnicity, third-generation “born in Russia” (that’s fourth-generation Russian). She came to North America as a teenager, speaks fluent Russian and American English but no Korean. She wrote about the “But where are you really from?” scene at a bus stop where she was questioned by a stranger because she was talking with a friend in Russian.
“Excuse me, what language are you speaking?” He would look at my (white) Russian friend.
“Russian” Nadya would reply.
“Russian,” he’d repeat as if clarifying it for his own sake, “So … You speak Russian too?” he’d nod in my direction.
“I presume I do.”
“Wow, so where are you from?” he’d linger
“No, no, but where are you really from?”
“… Russia” my tone never changing…
“But … You’re Asian.”