astra_nomer: (Default)
It breaks my heart to hear my kids complain to me that their classmates insist on calling them Chinese. For the record, they're not. They're part Korean, part Eastern European Ashkenazic mutt, and 100% American.

When I was their age, I perpetually got asked what kind of 'knees' I was: Chinese or Japanese?
Neither, I'm Korean, I'd answer.
You mean Koreanese?
No, just Korean.
I've never heard of that, there's no such thing!

My family were the only Asians in town at the time, so I suppose that explains their ignorance, even if it doesn't excuse their cruelty. But my kids go to a school with tons of minorities. Most of the kids are black or hispanic. Whenever I go to some school event, all I see is a sea of black-haired heads. I wonder how many of them might be offended by being called Mexican if they were in fact, from El Salvador or Guatemala, or some other Latin American country. Not that I know which kids have been mocking mine, to be fair.

I had hoped that kids these days would be more appreciative of cultural diversity than when I was young, and it depresses me to see that some things never change.

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astra_nomer

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