The Asian American community has garnered a lot of attention recently with the incident occurring on the United Airlines flight. A man of Asian decent was forcibly removed from the airline as his seat was needed for United crew members.
Upon removal the man was battered and bloodied due to being dragged from his seat to the exit of the plane by security personnel. The incident has many contemplating whether or not this was an instance of racism or not.
According to a Huffington Post article the targeting of the individual was not an act of racism as and algorithm was used to determine that he was the ideal person to remove. I agree that the targeting may not have been racist, the the escalation of force to the point that the man was physically harmed likely was.
The fact that the security guards were willing to escalate to that degree of force and brutality shows their lack of respect for his humanity and well being. The use of force also indicates their ability to exercise their control over another human being that they deem to be inferior in that situation that could have been settled many other ways without using brutal force.
The Huffington Post also discusses the idea that people a less likely to associate revise with the Asian American community. It is not an issue that gains as much attention or is easy to detect compared to racism toward other racial groups.
The lack of perceived racism toward the Asian American community comes from the idea that Asians serve as a “model minority” that supersede other minority groups and are accepted by the White race. Despite the perceived success of Asians, this does not make them immune to racism and discrimination.
This is a result of a history of exclusion in America and as many negative stereotypes about Asians as there are “positive stereotypes”.
I encourage everyone to take some time learning more about this history of Asians and Asian Americans as well as open yourself up to hearing their experiences to further understand their perspective by visiting Purdue’s Asian and Asian American Resource and Cultural Center.