Throughout all my travels in my life as an Asian American woman, I’ve learned that, yeah, sure Americans are loud, self-righteous and racist. People tend to cringe when they see a bunch of Americans. And growing up in Westlake Hills, TX— I can say we are definitely racist. Not just the Texans but also those “self proclaimed woke” people in Portland (where I went to Montessori school as a toddler and went back for college). But the thing is, I think we are one of the least racist countries in the world—it’s just that we, in our typical American flair, make a big fucking deal out of it. And we should. And at least we are having a dialogue. It hasn’t always been the best dialogue or the most constructive but at least we are willing to say, “there’s racist fucks here” and our racist fucks are willing to say “hell yeah imma racist fuck and I even got a permit to march around public streets to express my racist hateful views”.
In other countries, racism is sometimes less obtrusive but just as, if not more, obstructive as some people don’t even know they are being racist (especially in countries that aren’t as diverse as the US). In some countries, they feel they are too polite to be racist (what a vulgar term)—UK, my side eye is at you— that there is no acknowledgement or dialogue around a very present issue. In other countries, racism is so pervasive that it’s not even a thing to get mad at but the norm.
But what other country has so many people willing to speak out against a misguided POTUS and question the justice system—that which is here to protect us from ourselves and each other. Hell, what other country has football players, heroes to so many children, say enough is enough? Whether this is outrageously unpatriotic (or an extremely patriotic gesture as the First Amendment is at the heart of every American), I’m not here to say. All I can say is that at least Americans are not afraid to make a public statement that—hey—there’s racism and it’s not ok.