What an Absolute Mess

Last week, on the KAD page, something quite disruptive happened that reflected a lot of problems that are simmering below the surface -- not just in our little group, but in society as a whole. The catalyst of the conflict was a new member who showed up in the group and promptly broadcasted that she, as a Korean-born American, doesn't find Asian men very attractive at all. Her dream guy doesn't resemble Lee Byung-Hun in any way. Her literal dream guy is Milo Ventimiglia. This, of course, resulted in the instant combined fury of both men and women in the group slamming her, and the OP (Original Poster) digging her heels in even deeper and insulting all the people who insulted her. Soon afterward, she was booted from the page for making direct threats to some people. I observed all of the reactions and refused to participate because I was troubled by almost everyone's participation in the whole thing.

Sigh, where to even begin. I struggled for days to think of a funny way to approach this, but I don't think it's possible. This topic offers so many serious issues to analyze and none to gently poke fun of. All of these subjects deserve a spotlight on them as well. But I don't want to write a manifesto, so I decided to pick the one that rang truest to me and to attempt to provide a different perspective on it. So here goes...

Being considered desirable is a basic human interest. Is it a basic human right? That is uncertain. Discrimination abounds all over the place. I would say that the some of the most vociferous advocates of removing discrimination from society are potentially the biggest hypocrites regarding it and also the worst ambassadors. Why? Because it seems like it's a "do as I say, not as I do" philosophy. Many of the responders expressing outrage to the OP's viewpoint that she doesn't find Asian men attractive were women who's partners are not Asian men. Now, many of them stated that they just didn't have the opportunity to meet Asian men in the past, or if they could do it all over again, they would do it differently. But their choices still quietly speak to the truth of what the OP said, intentional or not. Asian men exist everywhere, they just often are invisible to society's eye. The guy taking your order at a Chinese restaurant? Most likely Asian. How many towns don't have a Chinese restaurant? I would probably claim that Tyler, TX has no Asians in it, but I've become a lot more aware of the ones that are actually here. It's kind of like buying a car and then seeing the same model everywhere all of a sudden. Did all these people just instantly buy the same car? Or are you now more aware of their existence?

Being an Asian man in America isn't exactly the easiest thing to be. It's even harder because Asian women suffer the curse of being on the other side of the spectrum. They are often fetishized and while that seems like a great problem to have, it really isn't. Let's put it in terms of water. Being an Asian man is like living in a desert with almost no water. Being an Asian woman is like living in a floodplain, where there is often too much water and much of it is contaminated. Both extremes are destructive in their own way. And yes, I am sure that some of you will instantly point out the fallacies of my analogy in a multitude of ways. I'm not attempting a universally accepted analogy. It's just the first one that came to mind and I'm too lazy to really think of a more accurate one. Too many times we are so insulated in our own suffering that we cannot imagine life in someone else's shoes, so creating an answer that satisfies everyone's situation is an impossibility, anyway. Thankfully, many of you will have no idea how discouraging it is to be an Asian man in today's society. Is it getting better? Absolutely. Is there still a long way to go? You literally have no idea how much more needs to be done.

But here's the thing. People are still allowed to have their preferences. The OP was horribly blunt and gauche in how she communicated her preferences, but ultimately, she is a product of her environment. And most of us, deep down inside, probably feel a little bit of what she clearly voiced, whether we want to admit it or not. To this day, I struggle with accepting a compliment based on my looks, because the wounds and scars of my past telling me in no uncertain terms that I was ugly and undesirable will always be raw. I thought that attempting to become universally desirable would heal those injuries. It didn't. All it did was rack up my scoresheet in embarrassing ways and hurt a lot of people who didn't deserve to be hurt. And all in the name of satisfying a quest that has no solution.

What caused the harsh reactions from this group was that this was coming from one of our own. But that's the thing. Adoption isn't the great unifying link that many people think it is. We have a healthy population of adoptees that would be welcomed with open arms to a White Nationalist organization. My brother is one of them. So it's not like these folks are alien to me. I understand it better than many. I don't dwell on this subject because I think that enough people in the world are discussing it that my contribution isn't really valuable. At one point, I felt a little guilty that I wasn't with an Asian woman. So I deliberately went out and found one. But that is discrimination as well! In the end, all we can do is strive to find the best person for ourselves. In theory, to refuse someone's candidacy based on their ethnic background is wrong. In practice, we refuse candidacy for all varieties of reasons, so I am not certain why ethnic origin is so much worse than faith, physical attributes, habits, etc. Perhaps the best way of doing it is not being so vocal about what we are looking for or not looking for. The OP hurt a lot of people in saying what she did. I fully support her right to think that, what I found troubling was her gleeful interest in making sure that everyone knew about it.

Attraction is arbitrary in so many ways. Centuries ago, voluptuous women were the ideal of beauty. Who knows, maybe in a billion years, short guys will be the "height" of desirability. The best way to approach this is to strive to be the best person we can be, forgive those among us ( or just ignore) who prefer not to recognize our potential, and be the best ambassadors for the next generations who follow us. I have worked very hard to be the anti-stereotypical Asian guy. Honestly, the goal was to become more like white guys. I fought to make sure that Asians could be perceived as athletic, charming, blah blah blah blah. At the end of the day, all I really should have done is work to have women see that Asian males can be interesting in their own way. That is one of the biggest regrets that I have. I thought I was fighting to make things better by showing white women that we're just as good as black guys or Hispanic guys, and especially white guys. What I should have done instead is not cared about that at all and worked on being the best version of myself that I could be, sans ethnicity. All I did in the end is show women that Asians can be dicks, arrogant, shallow, judgmental, and a lot of other negative aspects that fortunately no race has a monopoly on.

So, Ms. I Fingerblast Myself to Milo, I don't think you are a horrible person for your beliefs. I believe you are a horrible person because you didn't consider the consequences of displaying your preferences in such a crude and hurtful manner. Notice that I refuse your association not based on anything related to anything to do with your physical appearance. I reject you on the content of your character, which I find to be ugly no matter what you look like. I don't speak for Asian men at all. I only speak for myself when I say that your preference for not considering us is actually a terrific blessing in disguise.

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