"When you get angry, you get shit done"
Angry Asian Man blogger has spoken about Asian American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.
Angry Asian Man currently has over 67,000 likes on Facebook and over 55,000 followers on Twitter. The Daily Pennsylvanian reports that the behind the blog, Phil Yu, spoke at the 12th biannual Chai House as part of a discussion group on Pan-Asian cultural identity, hosted by Penn Sangam.
Yu said that he became passionate about Asian American issues when he learned about Vincent Chin, the Chinese American who was beaten to death in 1982.
“All of the sudden, I thought about the times I was threatened with violence, called racial slurs or made to feel like I didn’t belong in the country I was born in,” Yu said.
Kevin TaeJin, a Philadelphia resident who attended the event said, “I hear about crimes committed against other minorities pretty often, but this was the first time I heard about Vincent Chin.”
“I was upset that this wasn’t treated as a big deal, and that I was only learning about this now. It showed how little people value Asian Americans and Asian-American men.”
The University of Pennsylvania has recently suffered from a lack of commitment from administrators in maintaining its Asian American Studies program, with its future looking uncertain.
“Asian American Studies at Penn is in a dire situation,” said Yuan Zou, a member of the ASAM Undergraduate Advisory Board. “Seeing Yu’s success is inspiring and really shows us how much we can do.”
Sangam President and Engineering junior JingJing Zeng said she hopes to see change. “As minorities, a lot of the privilege we have is accredited to the Civil Rights Movement and what black and brown people have been doing throughout history.”
“Now is the time to give back, especially in this political era. Asian Americans are starting to realize that they’re not immune to racism and prejudice,” she added, “we need to shed away that image and be okay with the repercussions.”
Reflecting on his Angry Asian Man blog, Yu said, “We’re supposed to sit down, shut up, not rock the boat. Be the passive ones, let shit happen to us.”
“I wanted something that provoked that image. Because when you get angry, you get shit done.”