The untrue stereotype of the model minority has been disputed time and time again, however, Asian-Americans are still pitted against other minority groups and used as a measuring tape for “success” and “making it in America.” Not only is that an incomplete telling of the story, it’s a downright lie.
An article in Mic juxtaposed the overwhelming success that Indian-Americans have had in the Scripps National Spelling Bee (14 out the last 18 champions have been Indian-American) to the sad story of P.S 120 in Flushing, New York.
The public school held a carnival for their students which had a $10 entrance. More than 900 of the student body jumped in bounce houses, had their faces painted, and enjoyed the day as kids do at a carnival. Only a wall separated that carnival and a dimly lit auditorium which housed over 100 of that same student body that could not afford to pay that $10. They watched Disney movies, which doesn’t sound like a bad day, but when you end the school day and you see your pier with a Zebra painted on their face, you may ask if you were being “punished” as one student actually did. What may surprise America is that the demographic of that auditorium was largely poor Chinese students.
This is a story not being told and Mic broke down these 5 statistics that show the truth behind the model minority myth.
Asia is a continent, not a country.
This goes without saying but Donald Trump’s focus has been all wrong.
We’ll go to where we matter.
We’re not all doctors.
I like to end these type of pieces with a self-analyzed takeaway but Mic already put it perfectly for me:
If we continue to flatten the experiences of Asian Americans into a monolithic whole, we are failing the populations within that whole — often people from Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands — who still face significant barriers to living healthy, safe and secure lives in America. Changing this pattern starts with education.