Dangerous Act: Distorted Names

The Dangerous Act of Loving Your Neighbor

Chapter 10: Distorted Names

The Dangerous Act of Loving Your NeighborNigger. Homeless. Immigrant. Stupid. Spick. Slave. Harami. Prostitute. Butch. Poor. These stigmas can be assigned to people of a different gender, intelligence, race, disability, sexual orientation, economic class status or people group. Words like these have long histories and are excruciatingly offensive to some. When offenders name people in this way, they are essentially saying, “They (the devalued people group) are not worthy of equal status. And whatever makes them different from me is unacceptable in my community.” Generally, when people use these words, it is for the purpose of causing harm, de-valuing, and inflicting pain on another person.

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#RacialRec: Voice # 5 ~ Asian American ~ Marlene Molewyk Part 2

We are continuing with Part II of Marlene Molewyk’s interview.

How does is feel when people refer to you as an Asian American?

I’m starting to dislike the term Asian-American, because there seems to be a greater focus on the Asian, and less of a focus on the American, to a degree that people like me are often simply called Asian. I don’t like calling myself Asian, and for good reason. Several years ago, I spent a few weeks in Asia. During that trip, several Asians (that is, natives of Asia) proactively said things like: “I can tell you’re an American. You look like us, but the way you talk and carry yourself is very American. You are not one of us!”

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#RacialRec: Voice # 5 ~ Asian American ~ Marlene Molewyk

I am thankful for Chinese American, Marlene Molewyk, who has agreed to share her story, along with some of the technical and historical background concerning Asian Americans and racial reconciliation.

Are you a first generation American?

There’s actually some debate over whether “first generation” refers to the generation who immigrated here and became U.S. citizens, or to their American-born children. I personally prefer the first definition. My parents immigrated here from China and eventually became U.S. citizens, so technically, they’re really the first generation of Americans in my family. And that would make me second generation American.

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