An Open Letter To Fox News
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Politics and Activism

An Open Letter To Fox News

Racism anywhere is just something one cannot simply tolerate.

An Open Letter To Fox News

To the Reporters on Fox News,

I don’t normally watch Fox News (I try to stay away from biased news for my own good), but when Watters’ World aired a piece about gathering the opinions on this year’s elections of Asian-Americans in Chinatown, I couldn’t help but have my interest piqued a little. And so I decided to just sit down and watch the whole thing through.

Which was probably one of the worst mistakes in my life.

Throughout the whole segment, mixed feelings of confusion, sadness, and anger swirled within me as I became disgusted with the myriad of stereotypes that were thrown into every part of the whole video. I made myself watch the entire thing, just to see the types of stereotypes that so many Asian-Americans are hit with from day to day.

When you asked a man his opinion on the election, and he couldn’t respond, you started bombarding him with even more questions: “Is it the year of the dragon…rabbit?”

When a girl gave you her opinion on the election, Watters responded, “So China can keep ripping us off.”

When you got a foot massage (why?), you asked the masseuse to play a child’s game on your feet. You did not ask for her opinion on the election but instead taped her “mute” response.

Most of your segment consisted of snippets from American movies that “corresponded” with the scenario you were dealing with, with the most stereotypical Chinese music playing in the background. The two giggling women who answered about going to a party thought you were laughing with them. What they didn’t know was that you would compare them to two other giggling Asian girls, a very racist portrayal on how Asians should be viewed in general. The whole purpose of the interview was not to poke fun at Asian stereotypes, but to gather the opinion of a certain group of people on a current election, and you certainly failed at that. If you truly wanted to know how Asian Americans felt on the election, maybe sending out someone who was fluent in English, Chinese, Korean, etc., might have been a better option.

What personally affected me the most in the video were the interviews of the old woman. When she didn’t speak when Watters asked a question, you inserted a snippet of an old movie commanding her that she should, I quote, “Speak Woman. Speak!” She was silent not because she was dumb; she didn’t speak because she couldn’t. She even bowed out of respect even though she didn’t know what was going on. I saw so much of my own grandmother - a smart, strong, funny and intelligent woman - in her and couldn’t help but feel offended that you all decided to make a mockery of her.

When you make stereotypes like these or poke “fun” in this way in an effort to be funny, you choose to ignore - or are just plain ignorant of - a vast culture of what it really means to be an Asian-American in 2016 with a political opinion. We are so much more than the pseudo-taekwando (not Karate) tricks that you did and we are so much more the sellers of fake watches that you portrayed us to be.

We are a people of history, who have been through periods of extreme prejudice because of the way we look, and hardships, spending hours on end in swampy fields under the hot desert sun, leeches on our legs, painstakingly picking a grain of rice one by one. We are a people of culture who seek to discover more about life through our colorful dances, our musing poetry and our skillful martial arts. And as Asian Americans, we are the past, present and the future, remembering the dreams and hopes of our ancestors and parents who worked hard to get here, while striving to come to terms with our own hopes and dreams for a better world.

Characterizing us by the racist stereotypes that you have shown in the video is like picking out the two traits for which America is known for around the world to represent your culture: obesity and laziness. But like you all, we cannot be defined or limited by just stereotypes, as we each are our own person, different from each other yet beautiful in our own way.

So please, the next time you decide to interview a certain group of people, I implore you to check your facts and research more into the culture of the people who you are seeking an opinion of. Having an open mind can do wonders for you.

Troubled by Your Decisions,

A Concerned Asian-American

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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