Discrimination faced by ABCs in the US


The discrimination that ABC face in US could you expand on that a bit? For example?

Social dilemma English vs Chinese

i don’t think the OP is coming back.

that isn’t privilege. its the same thing as a chinese person getting a job in a chinese restaurant in a western country. they are being employed also for their looks. if you are black or asian you don’t fit what the taiwanese parents and employers are looking for. its nothing about privilege. buxiban teachers are not being hired for their english ability alone here. sure its stupid but there is a mindset behind it. if you are black or asian and a native english speaker you can still teach english legally, whereas someone who is french can’t. should they start complaining about native english speakers privilege now or what?


RunningTaipei - ABCs and other Asian Americans have high legal enfranchisement but low social enfranchisement in the US. My sense is that White Westerners in Taiwan have low legal enfranchisement but comparatively better social enfranchisement, but that is just my 3rd party view. Without social enfranchisement, legal enfranchisement can be taken away or rendered meaningless. Without legal enfranchisement, social enfranchisement alone seems petty.

Here is a quick list of the ABC and broader Asian American experience with discrimination in the US, and to be intellectually honest I’ve included some info which points to Asian American privilege as well:

Employment - Higher unemployment rates, partially attributable to discrimination.

Glass ceiling - Asian Americans are well represented in technical and professional positions but are underrepresented in management positions.

http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2009/01/asian-americans-workplace-employment-discrimination/ (see eeo report)

Wage/income - Asians exceeded whites in 2016 (first time ever in more than 160 years of Asian American history) but note that demographics (Asians tend to have higher degree attainment and live in expensive/high wage coastal urban areas) seem to account for the difference.


College admissions - Asian Americans need to have higher SAT scores than Whites to get into private universities.

http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2012/12/19/fears-of-an-asian-quota-in-the-ivy-league/statistics-indicate-an-ivy-league-asian-quota (note, DOJ investigating this even as far back as the 90s)

Violence - Hate crimes against Asian Americans on the rise.


Asian American media/entertainment representation and discrimination


This is just the contemporary and recent stuff. If you want to go into modern history (older than 20 years but in the lifetime of living Americans) we have the JA internment, discriminatory immigration and naturalization laws, Vincent Chin and Jim Loo, and the LAPD abandonment of Koreatown during the 92 LA Riots. More historical than that, you can add the Chinese Exclusion Act, educational segregation, lynchings, bans on property ownership, interracial marriage laws and residential segregation.

On a more individual basis, I have personally experienced - bottles and cans being thrown at me by people yelling “gooks go home”, someone breaking into my parents place trashing the house and scrawling “chinks get out” on the walls, a gas station attendant who shut off the pumps and said “f***ing foreigners”, a teacher who told me to take the TOEFL even though I was an A student in AP English.

I think I have a great life in the US and wouldn’t trade it for anything else (sorry, Taiwan). I don’t view my life as some struggle against the Man either. I am conscious that others here have more privilege in many contexts, but I too have amazing if lesser privilege in a country that, for all its faults, is still an incredible place. And I am proud that like all Americans, Asian Americans have contributed to our national development - Manzanar and Vincent Chin are nasty parts of our history but the tracks of the Trans Pacific Railroad and the hallowed graves of the venerated 442nd JA soldiers show our story at its best.


If you truly believe that hiring based on appearances or race is okay if the customers want it, even if it is “stupid”, then I’ll just leave it at that. We won’t come to any agreement.


it depends what you mean by ok. i think it doesn’t make any sense from a taiwanese persons perspective to think that a native speaker will have better english if they have a white face and i wouldn’t be ‘ok’ with doing this type of job myself.

but i think its ok in that i can’t change their attitude and if you are going to do this job then you should be aware of what the job description is and not cry ‘white privilege!’ just because you don’t fit what the employer expects. if you are going to make the choice to move to the other side of the planet then do some research first.


Zhengzhou, you make some valid points but a closer examination renders most of them moot. ABC many of them better off than most whites are doing just fine in education and business and social environment in the US. Look at executive members of many tech companies you’ll see time and time again a Taiwanese name or two. Mainland Chinese are pouring into the US too.

The Asian Americans being unrepresented in movies and TV is a very silly point to bring up. And quite frankly a rather racist comment if you ask me. Racist towards whites.

Thugs trashing your home and calling you gooks is despicable. Trump supporters no doubt. Did you live in a small hick town? I sympathize. We whites in Taiwan are routinely called racist names, but thankfully our apartments are not being trashed. (I have though heard one too many stories of feces left at foreigner door or the likes! :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:)

Lay off the white privilege thing. It’s a myth, a nasty myth. We’re suffering as much as the next guy or gal. It’s rough out there for everyone. And a million times worse for people in truly awful oppressive cultures and war-torn countries around the world

Edit: distinction between “Asian American” and “ABC”


Are you sure it was because of your race? I could tell you about the case of a completely obviously native English speaking Canadian who couldn’t get into an American university without taking the TOEFL because he was a naturalized Canadian from a non-English country. He was white.


The incident happened in America, I was applying to American colleges and I am a native born American and a native English speaker who went K-12 in the same American school system in my home town suburb. The only distinction between myself and my classmates was my race.

The teacher was probably well meaning. She didn’t say explicitly that she was suggesting the TOEFL because of my race, but I believe she thought that because of my race I was a foreigner. She was trying to help me get into a good college, and I recognized her likely good intent so I just smiled and good naturedly expressed my gratitude for her suggestion and explained my situation. While an unfortunate race-based assumption on her part, it was also a “privilege” for me to some extent because ultimately I knew she cared enough to want me to have every opportunity to succeed. Some of my classmates who were Black or actual immigrants from Latin America (and not native English speakers) didn’t get such attention or consideration from faculty when they were applying to college.

To other posters - I’ll respond to your comments separately when I have a chance.


Most Asian executives are co-founders of their tech companies, and often get kicked to the curb by the board at the slightest sign of business decline. See Marvell’s Sehat Sutardja, Yahoo’s Jerry Yang, and many other examples.

Zhengzhou’s link on Asian glass ceilings offers some insight into the matter. It’s not just an Asian American thing though, it’s even tougher for Latin Americans and Black Americans. Why are there so few of them at the executive level in the tech industry?

The question is why are more white men proportionally at the executive level than at the professional level?


It would be interesting to see how those numbers are changing over time, considering that it should take some time to advance through the ranks of a company.


Because white men own and run the world.


The chart speaks volumes to me. That the US absolutely does not discriminate against ABCs as the OP suggested. We don’t see charts like this is Korea Japan Taiwan China and many other countries.

Post 1980s saying ABCs are discriminated against in US is another myth, like the white privilege myth. Or at least one could say whites are discriminated against as much or far more all over the world, but then we just get into a tit for tat thing


Just because it’s less discrimination doesn’t mean it’s not discrimination.


You have to benchmark it somewhere don’t you? Some utopia where it was an exact statistical spread between all genders and races on the one side, and on the other extreme places that are almost totally discriminatory - China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan and so … (We’re talking executive vs professional and gender/race here as per chart you linked to).

US comes off looking stellar, how can it be interpreted any other way? US does not exist in a bubble


Chinese Americans on average own homes more than whites, are better educated, and have higher incomes. I’m not understanding where the discrimination comes from? “Ching Chong China Man want a chopstick…whong whong…” this kind of thing?

Zhengzhou is right in saying it wasn’t good at all in the 70s, 80s slowly getting better, but now in 2016 it’s not perfect, but comparatively I can’t agree with the statement “ABC face discrimination in the US” (we’re talking about now!).

Technically its of course true, because everyone faces it to some degree or less. (bring up a chart of the millions of whites living in poverty). But we must benchmark at some point and move on, leaving aside blanket statements.


From what I understand many Asians are heavily prejudiced towards other Asians and blacks and vice bersa.

So all the talk about the ‘white man’ is tiresome. White people in America for all the wrongs tried to bring in a constitution that guarantees freedom for all colors and religions. They went to war over it and the side that supported anti slavery and anti racial discrimination broadly won. It’s been a process. Do not see such open views on race and immigration in predominantly non white countries?
In Taiwan the law is heavily prejudiced against non Chinese immigrants. Overseas Chinese and mainland spouses can access Taiwan ID much easier. Imagine if you tried that shit in the US or Australia or Canada?

Does America have a whole section of people called overseas white? Cos in Taiwan they have three types of people, Taiwan citizens, overseas Chinese and foreigners.!!!


Most of the Asians in the states that I know or have interacted with tend to be successful and fairly well off. The USA has much better opportunity for Asians because most of them work hard, study hard and try to excel. Even if some resentment exists against them, I see them succeeding and earning very high salaries. So the discrimination claim is a bit weak from what I have seen.

I’ve only seen one obvious case of racism against Asians in the US when I was walking with an Asian friend and this redneck frat boy type drives by and shouts “f— you” to him.

If someone’s house got trashed for being Asian, then you must live in a hick area because I have never heard of anything like that in big cities and I cannot imagine anybody I am friend with doing that.

Though after living in Taiwan for several years, I now feel less sympathy for Asians complaining about racism in the USA since I see that Chinese culture is racist. And this extends beyond Chinese to another Asians (Korean, Japanese, Filipinos, Vietnamese, Indonesians, Malaysians, etc.). They all discriminate in some form against other groups/races.

Taiwanese will discriminate against southeast Asians here and heavily favor Taiwanese when in their own country. Even when they move to a new country, they still refer to the locals as wai guo ren.


I think the discrimination is mostly stereotypes and in some parts, if you date a women of another race, especially white, I get stares from some people or even hear them say things like “wow, is that asian guy dating a white girl, I never see that” Sometimes it’s a little more nasty then that.

And I really feel like where you live matter a lot. If you live in LA vs south carolina, the level of discrimination is wayyyy different.

Another note, I’m lived in Virginia, Texas, and Florida, and I won’t “brag” because people here not naming anyone seems to get upset when I “brag” But I drove a very nice luxury sports car. And most of my GF were white, or sometimes hispanic. I’m telling you, getting pulled over by a white cop in some of these states in my car with a white girl in the side… they don’t talk to me like I see they treat my white friends. And I’m asian. I can’t imagine what black americans go through.

also there are always idiots that do the guessing game of where you are from…and won’t let you answer until 5 mins of painfully waiting to say Taiwan and having to explain it’s not thailand…


Is that cause it’s uncommon, they have racist views on CCRs, or they think Asian dudes can’t get a date with a non Asian?

I have a couple of Asian friends who married white women (one American, one European). It’s not as common as a white guy with an Asian woman, but it seems to be increasing.


Are they all in similar fields? Asian Americans are only doing well in a very selected fields at the professional level, such as tech, science, finance and medicine. Not all Asians wants to have a career in those fields.