UGH: “I’ve never dated one of your kind before.”
Yes, it’s 2016 and unfortunately sexual prejudice is STILL a thing. Fetishizing and exoticizing is highly prominent toward members of the Asian community, where women are often considered sexy, but Asian men are de-sexualized. Often times it goes highly unnoticed thus making the issue only worse.
Sexual prejudice: claiming you’re not attracted to an entire group of people because of their race.
This is something the Asian community has long dealt with and is still struggling with today. In this weekly MTV’s Decoded, Franchesca Ramsey discusses fetishizing in comparison to the Asian community. She leaves us with a lot of important facts describing why Asian men and women are stereotyped sexually in the not-so-good ways they are. What a lot of you probably didn’t realize was that this sexual prejudice on Asians goes all the way back to the 1800’s.
This video can be an overwhelming 6 minute history lesson, so here are the important facts to bring home:
Why Asian women are considered nothing but sexy:
- Late 1800’s: Asian women were seen as sexual objects because of increased trade with Japan and China and the popular French story: Madame Chrysantheme. This story inspired the famous opera Madame Butterfly which is still popular today,
- 20th century: After WWII, over 200,000 Asian women were enslaved as prostitutes by the Japanese government as part of the Recreation and Amusement Association.
- Important fact: Throughout the Korean and Vietnam wars, 85% of American soldiers said they witnesses Asian women as being prostitutes. This means the first interaction three generations of America men had with Asian women was with them acting as prostitutes.
The deal with Asian men, and why they aren't considered sexy:
- Laws to know:
- 1800s: There were laws preventing Asian men from owning property and barred them from working in the heavy industries forcing them to do feminine jobs. These two laws combined emasculated Asian men by inhibiting them from purchasing a home and doing a job considered "manly".
- 1882: Chinese immigrants weren’t allowed into the U.S which made it difficult for the Asian men already here to find wives. This is result of the Anti-Miscegenation Laws.
- 1920’s: Laws passed that stopped nonwhite women from marrying Asian men.
So basically history is the answer to why Asian sex stereotypes still exist today. Institutionalized racism is still around but in ways that go unnoticed. And unfortunately, Hollywood doesn’t do anything to help the fact.
When is the last time you saw a male Asian lead in a movie or an Asian being romantically desired in a movie at all? Exactly. Even after all these years, Americans finds it hard to realize Asian men CAN be considered sexy, and Asian women AREN'T just a pretty face.
Sorry America, but it's time to stop repeating history! Asian men and women are just regular people, and it's time they be treated that way!