ching chong asian in the library song
Posted March 25, 2011on:
just a few thoughts jolted down before my brain shuts off…
I have read of people’s reactions to Alexandra Wallace’s youtube video, very briefly, and noted one comment somewhere on the web about people who responded to her racist remarks by attacking her gender. The comment really stuck in my mind, because from my own personal experience, I know that when attacked, I usually would note my attacker’s physical appearance/race/ethnicity/gender (not in any particular order), sort of an automatic response, not voluntary. I think it’s what Freud calls a defense mechanism.
Today I ran across the Jimmy Wong video, which got as far as NPR and was lauded as an appropriate if not clever response to Wallace’s attacks. Here’s what I got out of the “ching chong asian in the library song”:
1. the line about her out of her pounds of make up
2. sexual innuendos, the “I’m gonna make you beg” variety.
Even with humor at play, the song is still doing a physical attack and a gender attack. So she threw the first rock with the racist rants, got hell for it, then he threw back some rocks with gender and physical appearance insults, and he’s on NPR. She wanted to be funny and failed. He wanted to be funny, and apparently has succeeded. Humor is an odd thing, but I don’t think humor is always harmless.
I read the discussion on the Daily Bruins following the news release that Wallace has issued an apology through her spokesperson and withdrawn from UCLA. Many said that it wasn’t the actual complaint about “asians talking on the phone in the library” that got people riled up, but it was her comment about “hordes of Asians…being admitted into our school (university??),” emphasizing on the “our” as meaning excluding Asians. Give me a break. Dude, I was at Cal for years and students and staffs alike went around saying (I’m sure they are still going around saying) “our school” this and “our university” that. It’s how students talk. I’m not saying that Wallace doesn’t believe UCLA belongs to her and whatever people of her choice. She could be saying that, for all I know. But my point is, it’s not just her saying it. STUDENTS say “our school” everywhere. It’s the Bruins pride and the Bears pride and the …whatever pride it is that universities work hard to have students display.