Korean Woman Harassed by Caucasian Foreigners

A disturbing video has gone viral and has created a storm of online debates. The video clip is a mere 78 seconds, but within that time we are able to see two Caucasian males openly harass a female in a nightclub in Korea. It only takes 78 seconds for us to be disturbed by the manner in which the Caucasian men are treating the Korean woman.

The video begins with the Korean woman in what appears to be a drunk state. One of the men has his arms wrapped around her while the other begins filming her legs and moves up to her chest. The man on the sofa pulls her hair back for the camera to get a better look at her chest. During this time, the men make vulgar and sexual statements about her.

As the woman tries to pull away, the man on the sofa aggressively grabs her face and begins throwing insults at her. He puts a finger up her nose then shoves the same finger in her mouth. The two men burst into laughter and call her disgusting.

They then notice some discoloration in her teeth and begin aggressively pulling her lips back to get a shot of her teeth. She tries to protest, but they continue and throw more insults. At this point, she has become an object of ridicule for their entertainment. They call her “rancid” and “disgusting”. One of the men shouts “Why the f**k don’t you get plastic surgery like every other f**king Korean little b**ch” to her face. The Korean women shouts back some insults of her own before finally escaping the verbal and physical harassment.

The video was first posted on Youtube on June 8th, but was taken down for its content. Since then, the video has been found on multiple Korean sites . It instantly sparked online debates. Some viewers were angry at the men noting the many instances that Caucasian foreigners come into Asian countries with a feeling of superiority. Yahoo News reports Facebook user Rhys Flinter commenting, “Wow, utterly disgusting… The [Western foreigners] arrive at countries like Thailand, Korea and China to teach English and all of a sudden, women find them attractive and they are treated well just for being white.”

The angry comments are completely understandable. What shocks me is the number of comments where Korean natives actually blame the Korean woman for getting herself into the situation. Washington Post reports that a number of online commenters blame her for what happened. “She went crazy over white guys, lived at a club, and ran into trouble,” says one Jagei.com commenter. Another wrote, “After that, I think she’s going to go clubbing to meet white guys again.” Its unbelievable to see a women being verbally and physically tormented by two foreigners only to be verbally abused afterwards by her own countrymen. I most certainly expected the online comments to focus on the mistreatment of Asian women, but I didn’t expect it to become a debate about who’s fault it was. It is beyond me to understand why anyone would actually think “she was asking for it”.

This issue is one that extends beyond Korea. The Washington Post article points out that South Korea has one of the largest gender gaps in the world and “according to an annual study by the World Economic Forum… women have less equality in South Korea than they do in India, Burkina Faso or the United Arab Emirates.” They then point out that this may actually be the reason for Korean women seeking Caucasian men in hopes of equality. I would argue that this is an issue which extends beyond the Korean community and is one faced by the majority of Asian countries. It would be wrong to say that South Korea is the only country which places Caucasians on a pedestal.

I have heard Pilipino, Chinese, and Vietnamese women discuss how their family supports and even pushes the idea of marrying a white man. There is simply no denying it- Caucasian men are treated differently when they enter an Asian country and unfortunately some, like the men in this video, get a false sense of superiority.

I argue that the issue to be addressed is not whether this Korean woman was asking for it. This is an issue of the perception of Caucasian men and the way they treat Asian women. We understand that not all Caucasian men act that way, but this has happened enough times to inflict fear among the women in my Asian community. Yes, we are angry and rightfully so. Too many times have we been taken advantage of because of this false sense of superiority. Too many times have we been mistreated and objectified. These actions are simply not acceptable.

Let us know what you think and comment below.

Shameful New Trend: Trayvoning

We live in a world of social media trends, but we don’t always seem to enjoy them. Planking, a trend which had people literally imitate a wooden plank, gave us a few laughs, but eventually died down when everyone realized its stupidity. Cone-ing, the act of ordering an ice-cream cone at the drive-through and stunning the worker by grabbing the soft-serve rather than the cone, thankfully ended. Saying the term “YOLO” became so over-used that people finally retracted it from their vocabulary.

Often, we shake our heads at these trends, but eventually come to accept it. We see the humor in it and even partake in some of the trends ourselves. However, a new trend has risen that we refuse to accept. Unlike the trends previously mentioned, we see no humor in this shameful new act.

Insensitivity is an understatement for the new trend “trayvoning”. The goal is to imitate the dead body of Trayvon Martin which was aired during coverage of the George Zimmerman’s murder trial. You read correctly. Teens are finding humor in imitating a murdered 17-year old.

The trend had teenagers lying motionless on the ground with skittles and iced tea. Needless to say, the public is rightly outraged. We can only hope that this inappropriate and disrespectful trend meets its end soon enough.

trayvoning 2 trayvoning 3 trayvoning 4

 

 

Han Geng Joins the Cast of Transformers 4

Han Geng has created quite the name for himself in both China and in Korea. The Chinese Mandopop singer first rose to fame as the only Chinese member of Korean boy band Super Junior. Han Geng made history as the first non-Korean celebrity to formally debut in Korea. With the rise of Super Junior success, Han Geng was able to gather quite the fan base before before venturing off into his solo career.

So whats this Chinese heartthrob up to now? Apparently, taking part in some of the biggest franchises. Michael Bay confirmed that Han Geng would be joining them for the final installment of Transformers. He described Han Geng as “one of Asia’s top stars in the worlds of music, television and movies and has become one of the most influential entertainers in China. Now he’ll also be known for Transformers 4. Welcome Han Geng to the cast of Transformers.”

Han Geng is the second Chinese celebrity to be confirmed for Transformers 4 (Han Geng will act alongside Li BingBing for this production). We can’t wait to see how this will all unfold! Tell us what you think.

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WongFu Presents Saved By The Bell

Racebending and yellowface.

This has been a constant issue for the Asian/Asian-American community in the Entertainment Industry. As Wong Fu Productions points out, the movie 21 took a real-life story about Asian MIT students, but casted only two Asian actors. Cloud Atlas took non-Asian actors and thought make-up would be enough to pass them off as Asian (because apparently the more appropriate decision of just casting Asian actors was impossible for them). A number of Asian films are remade to be “more fit for an American audience”. The main difference? Casting Caucasian actors instead of Asian actors.

So what does Wong Fu decide to do? Turn the tables. In this funny and enlightening mockumentary, we follow the boys for their first movie production- a remake of the popular television show Saved by The Bell with a full Asian cast. By mocking the decisions of some movie-makers, Wong Fu points out how ethnicity is taken so lightly.

Our favorite moment? By using tape to make Ryan Higa’s eyes look larger and a blond wig to make him look Caucasian, Wong Fu brilliantly points out how these tactics do a poor job of changing his actual ethnicity. Check it out for yourself and tell us what you think:

Dancing Queen: From Awkward to Impressive in 365 Days

Some people spend years of their life learning how to dance impressively. Karen Cheng? 365 days.

The San Francisco-based designer taught herself how to dance in one year and decided to record her journey in a time-lapse video. Using an app called Lift, Cheng kept herself accountable and truly proves that a lot can be achieved in a year if you set your mind to it. On her website, Karen writes:

“People who watch me dance today sometimes assume I’ve been dancing for many years. I made this video so you could see the awkward body that started just one year ago.
Here’s my secret: I practiced everywhere. At bus stops. In line at the grocery store. At work — Using the mouse with my right hand and practicing drills with my left hand. You don’t have to train hardcore for years to become a dancer. But you must be willing to practice and you better be hungry.
This isn’t a story about dancing, though. It’s about having a dream and not knowing how to get there — but starting anyway. Maybe you’re a musician dreaming of writing an original song. You’re an entrepreneur dying to start your first venture. You’re an athlete but you just haven’t left the chair yet.
When you watch someone perform, you’re seeing them at the top of their game. When they score the winning point or sell their company for millions — you’re seeing them in their moment of glory. What you don’t see is the thousands of hours of preparation. You don’t see the self doubt, the lost sleep, the lonely nights spent working. You don’t see the moment they started. The moment they were just like you, wondering how they could ever be good.”

Watch her video below:

Flight 214 Crash Presents Opportunities for Racism

When the Asiana Airlines Flight 214 jet crashed into San Francisco airlines, you would think that people would understand the seriousness of the situation. You would think that a crash which injured 181 people (22 of which were in critical condition) and killed two individuals would receive feelings of sadness and understanding. You would think that people would send their condolences to the families of the two 16-year-old female Chinese students,Wang Linjia and Ye Mengyuan, who died during the tragic accident.

And if you thought these things, as I had, you’re in for a rude awakening. This time of grievance was robbed by those who took this opportunity to instead show racism.

fright 214The Chicago Sun-Times  angered many for there insensitive word play mocking the Asian accent. Often times, people will mix up the “L” and “R” sound to mock the stereotypical Asian accent. We’ve all heard it before, we simply never expected to see it headlining The Chicago Times- especially for such an inappropriate event.

While some argue that it may have been an unintentional typo, AsAm News is quite certain of the intentions and writes, “First, its pretty sick to use a play on words in a headline for a tragedy. Secondly, this one’s pretty racist.”

Editor-in-chief and publisher of Sun-Times, Jim Kirk argued, “”There was nothing intentional on our part to play off any stereotypes. …If anybody was offended by that, we are sorry.We were trying to convey the obviously frightening situation of that landing.”

 

With publications that show such insensitivity, its no surprise that the public follows in their footsteps. Many people voiced their reaction to the tragic accident in an atrocious manner on twitter. These tweets ranged from insults about Asians being unable to drive, small Asian eyes, and even insensitive remarks about North Korea being behind this.

planeracist 1 planeracist 2 planeracist 3 planeracist 4 planeracist 5 planeracist 6

 

 

 

 

And while we may be quick to point out the blatant racism towards Asians, we also cannot forget that we are just as capable of such insensitivity.

A Korean newscaster on Channel A, general broadcasting company in South Korea, allegedly reported, “The two deceased passengers were both Chinese. From our stance, it is fortunate.”

Poor choice of words during an insensitive time? Absolutely. The report angered Chinese and Koreans alike and the newscaster made a public apology explaining that he/she only meant that it was fortunate no Koreans were among the deceased.

With such a tragedy on our hands, you would think it wouldn’t be much to ask for some sensitivity with this issue, but more and more we find people using this opportunity to simply show racism and insensitivity.

Tell us what you think below.

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Post College Blues: Forever Alone… at 23?

“Now that college is over, I don’t know how else I can meet the love of my life. I’m destined to be a cat lady.”

This is the part where the late-twenties laugh at the absurdity of my generation. If you’re reading that line thinking that a person so young can’t possibly say something like that, then you’re unfortunately mistaken. Since college graduation, I can’t tell you the number of times that I’ve heard this said in seriousness.

By no means am I trying to justify this hopelessness from my fellow early twenty-year-olds. I thoroughly believe that not finding the love of your life by 23 is not the end of the world. However, since I am part of this hopeless-romantic generation myself, I understand where this is coming from.

cory and topanga

We grew up watching the great television loves. Boy Meets World, Saved by the Bell, Wonder Years, Dawson’s Creek. They all made us grow up believing that we’d fall for our childhood best friend.

But then our childhood ended. There was no childhood best friend turned lover, but that was okay. All the books, movies, and tv shows taught us that highschool was where love really blossomed. We would have our first relationship, our first kiss, and we would have our great love story by the time highschool was through.

But then highschool ended. Many of us hadn’t found “the one” at this point. Thankfully, before entering a state of hopelessness,  we were thrown into college. Surrounded by an entirely new crowd of potential loves, we believed that college was now our place to find our life partner. After all, many of our parents (as it turns out) met in college or at the age of 18-23.

 

But then college ended. And this is where we began panicking because nothing about the real world held resemblance to the shows we had relied on. Post-grad did not mean instantly finding a job and moving out with your friends and significant other. Our post-grad meant loans, unpaid internships, moving back home, and for some of us, an absence of that significant other that we were so sure we’d find.

loan debt

The point I am trying to make is that while it is easy to laugh at a 23 year old who says that they’re going to be “forever alone”, one must understand that this is all part of the panic. Upon finishing college, many of my generation entered a momentary panic because a lot of things were not turning out to be what our childhood made us believe. Immature? Yes. False sense of entitlement? Absolutely. But this is something that I would like to believe is a moment that we will all look back on and laugh at.

So maybe the late-twenties were never actually laughing at us because the statement was absurd. Maybe they were laughing because they went through this process and they already understood that contrary to  what we had expected, not having it all figured out at the age of 23 is nothing new.

 

Do we honestly think we’ve reached our prime and have no hope of finding the love of our life? Absolutely not. We know that there tons of ways we may meet our life partner- work, mutual friends, or just being at the right place at the right time. Deep down, we know its a matter of time. But this is the panic and we must see it through.

Strangest of Strange Asian Cuisine

The Fung Bro’s and AJ Rafael released the music video “Asians Eat Weird Things” and gave us a good laugh. Needless to say, we’re all aware that some Asian dishes would be considered weird and unappealing to the typical American cuisine even though we may love the stuff. Check out the music video below as well as our list of “Strangest of Strange Asian Cuisine”.

century eggs
CENTURY EGGS
A Chinese delicacy where duck, chicken or quail eggs are preserved until the yolk of the eggs to take on a creamy texture and the whites turns into a dark-colored jelly.

 

durian

DURIAN
A southeast Asian fruit known for its large size, strong (and often disliked) odor, and horn-covered exterior.

stinky tofuSTINKY TOFU
A form of fermented tofu that actually does have a strong enough odor to gain its name.

blood sausageBLOOD SAUSAGE
Links of pork and other meats mixed with blood to give them their distinct, dark color.

balutBALUT
A developing duck embryo that is boiled and eaten in its shell.

Are these too strange that you can’t stomach it? Or do you absolutely love the stuff? Tell us what you think and list some of your own strange Asian dishes.

Help Bring “Advantageous” To The Big Screen

Here’s your chance to support women of the API community in the Entertainment Industry. Jennifer Phang (Sundance Fest and Lab Alumna director-writer), Jacqueline Kim (actor, co-writer, producer) and Theresa Navarro (producer) are joining forces for the adaptation of  of ADVANTAGEOUS – an award-winning short film made for the ITVS FUTURESTATES online series. The short stars numerous API actors including Jacqueline Kim (CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES), 13-year-old Korean-American actress Samantha Kim, and Obie Award-winning actor James Urbaniak (THE VENTURE BROS, AMERICAN SPLENDOR)

“A sci-fi film set in a not-too-distant future, ADVANTAGEOUS is about a mother who must decide whether to undergo an extreme procedure in order to compete in an extremely difficult job market and provide a better education and future for her daughter. It deals with themes of feminism, family, education, and sacrifice.”

The short played at a number film festivals including Tribeca, CAAMFest and the San Diego Asian Film Festival, and won the Golden Reel Award at LA Asian Pacific Film Festival. After gaining much praise, it was developed into a feature-length script. This is where you come in.

The Kickstarter Crowdfunding Campaign aims to raise $30,000 to fund turning this short into a feature film. The campaign deadline is this Friday July 12th. If you’d like to see Advantageous make it to the big screen, click here to make a contribution!

Emotional Cheating Vs. Physical Cheating

“Would you rather be physically or emotionally cheated on?”

Whenever I am asked this question, I always have the same response- I would, without a doubt, choose to be physically cheated on. By no means am I saying that being physically cheated on is a good option. I simply believe that being emotionally cheated on cuts deeper and hurts more. Much more.

When one is physically cheated on, this is often out of lust or attraction towards someone else. In fact, many individuals who have been the ones to physically cheat on their significant other (and when I say physically, I mean that there were no emotions involved what so ever) have admitted that this was a momentary fluke. It was usually an illogical (and often intoxicated) decision that was “in the moment” and with an individual that they could never realistically give their heart to. Many times, the specific individual that they chose for their infidelity didn’t actually matter.

Am I trying to justify physical cheating as a minor mistake that should be easily forgiven? Absolutely not. But the other option?

Being emotionally cheated on means that your significant other was able to see another person in the same light that was only suppose to be given to you. No longer is this a question of attractiveness or your significant other’s moment of poor judgment. These are actual emotions that have potential to be something more serious.

The scary part? You may never actually know when you’re emotionally cheated on. Emotional cheating does not necessarily have to be acted on or even told to you. Quite frankly, your significant other may not even know that they’re emotionally cheating simply because there’s no rulebook that specifies what emotional cheating is. Is it having a crush on someone? Is it having a emotional connection with another person? Is it even simply having thoughts of another person being “the one”?

Physical cheating can be measured and discussed. In fact, this happens often in relationships. Together, you two decide what’s okay and what crosses the line. For some, kissing is cheating. For others, simply dancing in the club with someone else is. But how do you tell your significant other that they’re not allowed to have a crush or have emotions for someone else when, arguably, that is out of their control?

Huffington Post recently tried to solve the mystery of what is considered emotional cheating by surveying 1,000 U.S. adults. They found this discovery:

Emotional Cheating lies in the eyes of the beholder
60% of people said that if their significant other developed a “deep emotional connection” with someone else, they would consider it cheating. Only 18% of people said it would not be cheating. When the question was flipped, however, and they were the ones who developed a deep emotional connection with someone else, only 50% of the people believed it was cheating and an increased 29% said it would not be.

Gender Matters
Men proved more consistent with their responses as opposed to women. About half of the men agreed that if they or their partner developed that emotional connection, it would be considered cheating. Women, however, were quick to change their response. If their partner developed the emotional relationship, 70% believed it would  be cheating. If they were the ones to develop the emotional relationship, only 56% believed it would be cheating.

So tell us what you think. What truly counts as emotional cheating? Do things like gender really matter in this situation. Is physical cheating worse than emotional cheating? Comment below
To view the survey, click here.