I was leaving the library and watched a car run a stop sign. Luckily no one was crossing the street at the time, so no one was hurt. A student walking near me joked that the driver was probably Asian, clearly finding the stereotype of Asian as bad drivers to be amusing. I told them that their race was irrelevant, and that I was just glad no one was close enough to get hurt. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that people continue to perpetuate racist stereotypes, but I guess I expected better from the students on our campus.
In one of my classes last year, we read a novel by a Japanese American author discussing the struggles of Asian Americans in this country. One student insisted that the author’s issues were unfounded, as Asian Americans were ‘more successful than other minorities’. Perpetuating the ‘model minority’ myth is incredibly harmful to Asian Americans; perpetuating the idea that Asian Americans are more academically, economically, and socially successful than other minorities allows white Americans to ignore very real racism Asian Americans face in this country.