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UCLA Girl Rant

Ok. So TonyP4 first brought up in the open comments this video of an anti-Asian rant that has become all the rage on the Internet and UCLA.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Johj5WEYzZo

Here is a transcript (as found on youtube):

Okay, so here at UCLA it’s finals week.

So we know that I’m not the most politically correct person so don’t take this offensively. I don’t mean it toward any of my friends I mean it toward random people that I don’t even know in the library. So, you guys are not the problem.

The problem is these hordes of Asian people that UCLA accepts into our school every single year, which is fine. But if you’re going to come to UCLA then use American manners.

So it used to really bug me but it doesn’t bother me anymore the fact that all the Asian people that live in all the apartments around me — their moms and their brothers and their sisters and their grandmas and their grandpas and their cousins and everybody that they know that they’ve brought along from Asia with them – comes here on the weekends to do their laundry, buy their groceries and cook their food for the week. It’s seriously, without fail. You will always see old Asian people running around this apartment complex every weekend. That’s what they do. They don’t teach their kids to fend for themselves. You know what they don’t also teach them, is their manners.

Which brings me to my next point. Hi, in America we do not talk on our cell phones in the library. I swear every five minutes I will be — okay, not five minutes, say like fifteen minutes — I’ll be in like deep into my studying, into my political science theories and arguments and all that stuff, getting it all down, like typing away furiously, blah blah, blah, and then all of a sudden when I’m about to like reach an epiphany… Over here from somewhere, “Ooooh Ching Chong Ling Long Ting Tong, Ooohhhhh.”

Are you freaking kidding me? In the middle of finals week? So being the polite, nice American girl that my momma raised me to be, I kinda just gave him what anybody else would do that kinda like, [puts finger up to lips in a “shh” motion]. “You know it’s a library, like, we’re trying to study, thanks!” And then it’s the same thing five minutes later. But it’s somebody else, you know — I swear they’re going through their whole families, just checking on everybody from the tsunami thing. I mean I know, okay, that sounds horrible like I feel bad for all the people affected by the tsunami, but if you’re gonna go call your address book like you might as well go outside because if something is wrong you might really freak out if you’re in the library and everybody’s quiet like you seriously should go outside if you’re gonna do that.

So, thanks for listening, that was my rant. I just — even if you’re not Asian you really shouldn’t be on your cell phone in the library but I’ve just never seen that happen before so thank you for listening and have a nice day.

 

I’m Asian and spent 9 years at UCLA so figure I have some “standing” to briefly weigh in on the subject.  My opinion has nothing to do with the “Chinese perspective,” just mine.

I personally think what this girl did (I won’t divulge any more personal information about her since she clearly has voiced her concern for her privacy and safety as a result of the public attention) is not that bad. Finals week is a stressful time, and a little rant here and there is fine.  At UCLA, we have the midnight scream (where students just go beserks making noise – yelling, screaming, bashing pots and pans, etc. – midnight everyday during finals week), so why not a little YouTube rant?

I don’t think she is spouting hate toward Asians – even with her mentioning of “hordes of Asian people that UCLA accepts into our school every single year” and “everybody … they’ve brought along from Asia with them.” That’s could be taken as a lack of sensitivity, but given the context – she said she was ranting, her tone, her body language, I don’t think it could be taken as anything beyond slight insensitivity.

The only thing I think that’s really done in bad taste is the mentioning of the tsunami in Japan. It’s not anything she said that was offensive, but her speaking about the tsunami victims in this way at a time of great grief.

Her “targeting” of Asians for bad cell phone behavior in the library should not be taken as a hate attack.  At the end of the video, she clearly stated she wanted all students – of whatever ethnicity – to show better cell phone etiquette in the library.

I am glad UCLA is not disciplining this girl officially, and I hope this girl does come back to UCLA to complete her studies soon. To all fellow Bruins, don’t get too much hung up on this. Not all her observations are completely groundless: many, many Asian parents do do for their children on the weekends what she claims in the video; and cell phone conversations carried loudly on a different language do seem to carry that much further in the library.

I’ve heard UCLA to stand for University of Caucasians Lost in Asia. I thought it was funny – although if I wanted to be extra sensitive, I might take it as an insult.

UCLA is a world renowned institution with a great international reputation. It needs to have an open and confident attitude about diversity. That means being sensitive to diversity as well as not being too politically correct about it.

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  1. March 28th, 2011 at 11:54 | #1

    I heard on NPR talking about this story last Friday. I think the problem with too much media reaction to something rather minor and UCLA’s official ‘harsh’ reaction (though probably with ‘good’ intentions) will get interpreted as a stigma on the minorities being overly sensitive.

    There are tons of much more egregious purposeful neglect by the media (or willful vilification) deserving of the public’s attention.

  2. colin
    March 28th, 2011 at 11:55 | #2

    Her use of “ching chong” means she obviously is a racist. That’s basically like calling the a black person the N word (and not in the getto good way amongst the blacks themselves). Classic explanation of a racist is that, “no, I’m not racist towards my [race] friends, just their [race] in general”.

    She’s free to spew her hate. But then, she should accept the consequences of such notoriety and others lambasting her on it. I see so many people calling her out on it. Kudos to them. Get on that stupid b*tch!

    Not saying that she might not have some points about rudeness at the library, but there are definitely less offensive ways to state that. She’s getting, and I hope will be getting more, of what she deserves.

    As for asian parents doing chores for the kids, while they shouldn’t be babied, there’s something to be said for the sacrifice and dedication of asian parents towards the education of their kids. Maybe there’s even a lesson for the non-asian parents and kids of the US in this?

  3. TonyP4
    March 28th, 2011 at 13:01 | #3

    The following reply is great and the song is just beautiful. There are some other replies I find quite entertaining.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zulEMWj3sVA

    We should treat it as a constructive criticism and improve our public behavior. It is true we raise our voice in public too loud. We gain respect on what we behave, not from how wealthy we’re.

    She generalized Asians, and I bet Japanese behave better in public. With about 40% of Black/Hispanics dropout from high schools, UC campuses are full of Asians.

    It made it to NYT.

  4. SilentChinese
    March 28th, 2011 at 13:45 | #4

    and I bet Japanese behave better in public.

    Have you seen how drunk japanese men urinate in public?

  5. Smalltalks
    March 28th, 2011 at 13:47 | #5

    Hi,

    It was reported on Chinese media that there are half million protesters in London? Why nothing reported from CNN?

    The whole world is on fire.

    Please take a look at the pictures I collected.

    http://truthbetoldaboutchina.blogspot.com/

  6. TonyP4
    March 29th, 2011 at 06:55 | #6

    When they urinate and they’re drunk, they’re not responsible for urinating but for being drunk.

    When the grand ma held the kid to urinate outside the rest room of World Expo esp. in front of a BBS camera, she is responsible.

    The following is funny.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXqEIylLp9k&NR=1

  7. March 29th, 2011 at 14:30 | #7

    This comedic response is kind of funny.

  8. TonyP4
    March 30th, 2011 at 07:45 | #8

    I feel sorry for the girl who started the rant. She left UCLA and she got some death threats which are quite silly and give us a bad image as a race. I know many college students do/did many racial slurs far, far worse than her. She never imagined it could reach millions in a week or so and the three minutes could offend 60% of the world population. Technology sucks!

    I draw some conclusion beside the above.
    * Really have to be careful on what we write/speak in the web. Most of my posts here are for fun though.

    * Her real sin is she is white. If she were yellow, black, Hispanic, she may not have to suffer from these consequences.

    * It is bully on a race. I find it a little insensitive, but quite entertaining, and a well-done piece for its entertaining value depending on how open you’re. When we talk about how other races behave in our dinner tables, unintentionally we could pass biases to our children. It looks like she got it from her parents unknowingly.

    * For me, it is also a constructive criticism. We, Chinese, talk too loud in public and do not behave well in public by American standard.

    I have many bad experiences: a old Chinese lady yelled in subway and a college student picked his nose in public. Japanese line up neatly for buying enough milk/bread for the day while Chinese rush up to buy all the salt. We never learn if we do not want to learn. Again, we gain respect from what we behave, and not from how wealthy we’re.

  9. TonyP4
    March 30th, 2011 at 08:24 | #9

    The winner of this rant is Jimmy Wong. I do not know anything about him before the rant. His song is very good and tasteful (for my low standard), and he should be in American Idol. I would not be surprised he will give a big hug to the girl for helping his career (not just talking dirty as the song says).

    He sings: Ching Chong means I love you. Ching Chong to all and we have a better and harmonious world!

    Here is his song again that has been viewed over 3 millions times. From his other songs in YouTube, he is not a one-time wonder.

  10. March 30th, 2011 at 08:35 | #10

    @Tony4P #9,

    I changed the link to embd. Really enjoyed it!

  11. March 30th, 2011 at 08:48 | #11

    NPR had also aired a segment of this song. Thx TonyP4. I was going to try to find it.

  12. March 30th, 2011 at 12:43 | #12

    Tony4P,

    Call me cruel, but I don’t feel bad for that rant girl.

    World is a small place. But the World was a small place long long time ago.

    In the old days, people lived in villages, where everyone knows everyone else’s secrets, and people were VERY careful in not saying anything offensive, because Ranting girls get burnt as “witches”.

    Today, people live apart, and sometimes the cold world of distance and technology may seem to offer some obscurity and privacy, but that’s just foolishness.

    It’s still a small world, and People better watch what they say.

    The Internet is a village of about 2 BILLION people, with a rumor mill that runs at the speed of light, and your every word is cached and copied, and 42% of that village are Asians!

    No, technology does not “suck”. It just amplifies what we always had: Humans who offend other humans get stumped on. So better watch your words VERY carefully!

  13. xian
    March 30th, 2011 at 16:38 | #13

    No one would’ve cared were it not for the “ching chong” thing. Asians are usually the quietest in libraries anyway. Making those comments AND putting it on Youtube is pure idiocy. Ditzy bimbo should’ve known better.

  14. March 31st, 2011 at 01:02 | #14

    I actually did not understand the slang ching chong existed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ching_chong). I swear I’ve heard that phrase used around me before. I guess sometimes ignorance is indeed bliss…

  15. Rhan
    March 31st, 2011 at 02:53 | #15

    Until today I still can’t understand why speaking Chinese among Chinese is an insult or lack of courtesy toward non Chinese speaker. I do know the fact that English is the international language but we can’t expect everyone to have a perfect grasp of that language. Can I charge the English speaker as being arrogance when they speak English among themselves regardless if the rest could understand them or not? Among Asian, I respect Japanese because even some of them speak decent English, they insist to have translator.

    I think using Ching Chong to insult is quite common in SEA, mostly in internet and blog.

  16. TonyP4
    March 31st, 2011 at 05:48 | #16

    Let the one who has not committed this kind of ‘crime’ stand up. Have we said ‘black devil’ and/or ‘white devil’?

    Few I bet as biases, stereotypes, discrimination are just human nature. Even the black discriminate against those who are blacker than themselves, same for Chinese. We just have to control our expression and be sensitive. Most importantly, do not pass our biases to the next generation intentionally or unintentionally.

    I’ve watched several videos Indians making fun of Chinese, and vice versa. No one makes a big deal on these videos. Do we have double standards when the offender is white? The punishment does not fit the ‘crime’.

    Alexandra has learned her Politic Science 101. When you’re in public, you have to be politically correct. Many politicians lose his/her jobs by slipping out some poor comments.

    She is a good communicator and can use her talent for better work than rating. Definitely she is better than the ignorant Sarah.

    In the old days, it would take decades to communicate her rant from the wall of the lady room to millions.

    ———
    Jimmy’s beginning video pretended he is FOB (fresh off boat) like me. He could make up the entire video by mixing up several channels. He has talent, when the word ‘talent’ is over-used. Fun to watch.

  17. March 31st, 2011 at 06:03 | #17

    The old saying is correct, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

    I will stand up and say, I don’t do “stereotypes” of other people.

    *That said, I find that most groups of people have “stereotypes” against their own people, and that usually is enlightening enough for me in discussions.

    Several times, I have read and heard Chinese people making sarcastic remarks about Chinese people, Indians making similar about Indian people. (If you browse Indian Websites, you will find enough comments from Indians who talk about how Indian managers “market” themselves to climb corporate ladders, or kissass or peddle influence to get ahead, but don’t actually do any real work.)

    Though, I would not necessarily call these “stereotypes”, they are more generalizations based upon self-pessimism.

    I do discuss these as “intragroup stereotypes”, as cited from other people, not as some thing I myself hold to be my own opinion.

  18. TonyP4
    March 31st, 2011 at 06:13 | #18

    I have to admit I did far worse than Alexandra in my college days. She apologized and it is better than me as I have not apologized for my bad deeds. Let’s forgive and forget.

  19. March 31st, 2011 at 07:02 | #19

    Let’s face it, people may say they forgive each other, but society does not.

    If you do something wrong publicly, you are marked for life. That’s life.

    Sometimes, people are more willing to give a “pass” for your misdeeds, if they had done something similar in their life. But really, that’s not “forgive or forget”, we all still judge each other “moralistically”. That’s what human beings do.

    For that Rant Girl, She’s screwed. Because moralistically, no one would believe that they would blunder as badly as she did. Some may think the same as she does, but they would never admit that they would ever say those things in public.

  20. Bob
    March 31st, 2011 at 10:59 | #20

    “So it used to really bug me but it doesn’t bother me anymore the fact that all the Asian people that live in all the apartments around me — their moms and their brothers and their sisters and their grandmas and their grandpas and their cousins and everybody that they know that they’ve brought along from Asia with them – comes here on the weekends to do their laundry, buy their groceries and cook their food for the week. It’s seriously, without fail. You will always see old Asian people running around this apartment complex every weekend. That’s what they do.”

    Well, those Asian kids probably have what are known as “helicopter family members”, just like MacArthur’s mother Pinky: http://lisawallerrogers.wordpress.com/2009/11/23/general-macarthur-had-a-helicopter-mom/

  21. TonyP4
    March 31st, 2011 at 14:18 | #21

    Even the saints make mistakes. We have 3 strikes and you’re out as long as the strikes are not serious. We all make mistakes, apologize, learn from them, and move on. She is just a college kid, has a lot to learn in life, and a lot of mistakes to make.

    Forgiveness is the best weapon as Jimmy’s song demonstrates with good taste and humor. He really promotes a good image of our race and the death threats are just the opposite.

  22. TonyP4
    April 5th, 2011 at 08:25 | #22

    I hope we Chinese will learn how to improve our behavior in public. When we have our dumb nationalism, we will not improve ourselves. There are too many bad examples. It is not hard to find bad examples in taking subway in NYC, Toronto, or any US cities with a lot of Chinese. Why we behave so badly? One’s opinion:

    * About 250 years ago, China was bullied by 8 nations (Europeans, US and Japan). It was semi colonized and bankrupt after paying all the penalties. The civil war continued the misery. Survival was more important than behaving nicely in public. They could not afford to be nice.

    * WW2 continued the above scenario. The Japs were brutal and Chinese were treated worse than dogs.

    * Mao’s era. Mis governance caused famine – Mao had contributed a lot to China to be fair. Cultural Revolution caused the loss of education for the entire generation. We do not expect them to educate their children to be well behaved, but how to survive in a tough world that they experienced. Mao’s bamboo curtain also kept them away from understanding how developed citizens behaved.

    It will take another generation to change how Chinese behave. Some tourists from mainland Chinese are surprised to see how folks in Hong Kong and Taiwan line up for everything. At least they do not have the bamboo curtain now and they should afford to be nice. Again, we only gain respect from how we behave, and not from how rich we’re.

  23. Wukailong
    April 6th, 2011 at 21:12 | #23

    All this is really small potatoes compared to this man:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/19/rush-limbaugh-mocks-hu-ji_n_811223.html

    I’m not American so I can’t say how much of a following he has, but apparently he’s popular. Geez…

  24. TonyP4
    April 7th, 2011 at 06:36 | #24

    Limbaugh is an idiot. The reason he is popular is we have a lot of idiots (with a lot of biases) in US. I excuse Shaq’s racial slurs as he is uneducated, but not this guy who pretends to be learned.

    I bet Hu’s English is far better than Obama’s Chinese. I applaud any leader speaking the visiting country’s language to try to say we can speak the same language if we try.

  25. April 7th, 2011 at 07:04 | #25

    Correction,

    Limbaugh is an idiot that came out of the closet, and now he’s a publicly traded branded “Idiot” (with a drug habit).

    And he’s the symbol of everything wrong with the US education system, people who don’t know something but pretend that they know.

  26. piotr
    April 24th, 2011 at 18:33 | #26

    .. as always, there are black sheep on both sides. The most important thing is to learn from each other.

    I always get the creeps when someone coughs in a train in Europe. All over Asia, people are polite enough to use mouth-masks when they have a viral/bacterial – triggered infection of the respiratory organs.

    I wish people in Europe would do this.

    On the other hand, I must say that I do understand some of the critisism the pol.sci. student tried to articulate. The medium was just not a very smart choice.

  27. raventhorn2000
    April 25th, 2011 at 06:51 | #27

    The important thing is to learn to avoid generalization.

    I would think that a pol.sci. student would know how to make criticisms completely racially neutral.

    Hello? It would have been easy to criticize other people for “talking in the library”, without all the racial stereotyping.

    Medium had nothing to do with it. She went out of her way to generalize about other people’s race.

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