July 15, 2005
Written by C.N.
It’s a pretty sad statement that racist comments and jokes against Asian Americans (and people of color in general) on the radio are becoming more and more commonplace in American society, and the latest example comes from Albany, NY (where I lived for six years during graduate school). Asian Media Watch reports that on June 21 and 22, DJs at WRCZ 94.5 made several derogatory comments and racial slurs at Asian Americans and Blacks:
Come to think of it I have it over at Bok Choy’s cleaning it. I have it over at Bok Choy’s Deluxe Cleaners on Western Avenue. And uh. He says “Man, dat big shirt. Big shirt. I neva seen such big shirt before. Preez shirt. Preez shirt. Big shirt.” [imitating Asian accent with Asian music playing in background] And your point is? You slant-eyed little gook. Just clean it.” Pi: “Want some chicken?” [imitating Asian accent] . . .
[Plays "When the Saints Go Marching In" by Louis Armstrong"] JR: [imitating Louis Armstrong] “Pick that cotton. [laughter] [sings imitating Louis Armstrong] Nobody knows the trouble I seen. Nobody knows my trials. You know I’ve been to the mountain top! Summertime and the living is easy. Catfish jumping and the cotton is high. Your daddy’s rich and your momma’s good looking. So ah hush little baby. Don’t you cry.”
Pi: Isn’t it a coincidence that Michael Jordan is doing commercials for cotton underwear? [laughter] What? Anyone else notice that? JR: Hi. I’m Michael Jordan. I’m wearing cotton underwear. I picked it myself.”
These are only selected excerpts — there are several more incidents of racist slurs and comments. Just because these kinds of events are becoming more common, we as Asian Americans should not get lulled into complacency and resign ourselves to being treated with such ignorance, disrespect, and hostility.
If you feel the same way, please visit the Asian Media Watch site and copy their complaint email to send to the radio station, Galaxy Communications (the station’s parent company), and most importantly, to the Federal Communications Commission.
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Suggested reference: Le, C.N. . "Latest Racist Radio Skit" Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America. <http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2005/07/latest-racist-radio-skit/> ().
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