Category Archives: race

This isn’t helping my SJW trust issues any

Standard

WHY are so many people talking about U-Kwon’s “dreads”?

It’s people who like them; it’s people who don’t. Here is an ENTIRE THREAD objecting to “purple dreads [and] cultural appropriation,” and there’s plenty more out there (most of which I’ve blocked already, because there is only so much stupidity that I can cope with).

In all honesty, if you cannot tell the difference between dreadlocks and BRAIDS (called BRAIDS because the hair is, yes, BRAIDED), then you have absolutely zero credibility. How can you possibly weigh in on a issue that you obviously know nothing–I mean NOTHINGabout?

I don’t pretend to be an expert on Black hair, but come on–I don’t remember ever not being able to tell dreads from braids, and I’m white! It’s like someone trying to weigh in on some issue between Korea and Japan, and they’re Donald Trump they think both countries are a part of China or something.

I’m willing to acknowledge some gray area between dreads and twists (in no small part because people will often insist that what look like dreads are really twists–dreads are sometimes associated with stoners, so “twists” are more professional, even when they’re basically just very neat dreadlocks). I freely admit that when I first saw this:

it took me a second look to realize that these were braids and not some kind of threadlock or something. But you don’t look at this texture:

and think “dreads” if you’ve ever actually seen dreadlocks.

Which means that the people objecting to the “dreads” never have.

And that’s what makes me really skeptical that most of the people objecting to this are people who dislike the whole conflation of Black culture and hip-hop concept that is common in K-Pop. For every person offering plausible logic and the remotest semblance of knowledge, there’s this whole slew of people saying nothing more than, “This hair is ugly, messy, shitty, and thuggish” (…gee, I wonder what makes a hairstyle “thuggish”?), or complaining about the cultural appropriation of a hairstyle that they cannot identify with any accuracy (which is kind of hilarious, really, but still), or being outraged because Koreans are doing something other than pop or because someone hired Black people again.

Now of course, I’m white, and because I’m older and grew up in a racist part of the country, I can be a little paranoid. But the Keep Blacks Out of K-Pop crowd certainly does exist, and of course there’s the fine old assy tradition of classifying behavior by a group you don’t like as “problematic” in hopes of generating scandal. In my opinion, someone complaining about “dreads” when no dreads are to be seen is a person who deserves to have a little suspicion cast their way.

Advertisements

This is why it’s called a FOREIGN country

Standard

Of course the news that Zico will be appearing on one of Taeyang’s songs has lead to some discussion over whether or not Zico deserves such an honor, given his defective character. (Yes. You would perhaps expect Big Bang fans not to play this game, but . . . welcome to K-Pop.)

The specific context isn’t important, though–I want to talk about one particular exchange because it is something that I’ve seen happen repeatedly whenever Zico’s sins are under discussion.

First, some SJW comes up with a list of what he has done that is bad. I’m going to screenshot this one, because (quite possibly for the first time) it is factually accurate. These are things Zico actually has done–most other lists include a lot of fanciful inventions to make him look racist, sexist, or homophobic:

And the other person replies, Oh, but Zico got dragged by K-netz for all that.

That’s a pretty typical reply, regardless of the accuracy of the “Zico is racist/sexist/homophobic” list–whatever it was, K-netz dragged him for it!

But here’s the thing: Zico got dragged by K-netz for none of that. All that stuff upset American fans, but not Korean fans.

Would you like to see the list of things Zico has been dragged by K-netz for?

  • Dating Seolhyun
  • The Thailand scandal
  • Another member of his group wearing clothing with Japanese writing on it during a Korean Independence Day celebration (happy Korean Independence Day, by the way)
  • Kissing a man on Saturday Night Live
  • The rice-pizza scandal

Notice a gap there? No concern about racism; no concern about sexism; no concern about homophobia (quite the contrary, in fact). Case in point: The American controversy over racism and homophobia in “Tough Cookie” was SO big . . . it resulted in a couple of Pann posts explaining to Koreans that it existed. (Kissing a man? Government sanction of the show. No lie.)

Korea is 96% Korean. The use of American slurs or anything that requires knowledge of American history doesn’t have a huge impact there, because Koreans (including the Koreans who do these things) don’t understand–that is not an excuse, that is a fact. This is why you have really weird shit, like Koreans doing the minstrel Michol character, and then saying it wasn’t racist because they didn’t make him that dark.

None of that is the same as saying that Koreans are not capable of understanding that something is offensive and why (and then apologizing, and then having those apologies left off those SJW lists). But it does mean that education is required. It’s simply unrealistic to expect Koreans to have the same intuitive knowledge of what is offensive to Americans that Americans have (just like an American isn’t likely to have the same intuitive knowledge of what is offensive to Kore–Jesus Christ! Did you just give your money to that store clerk with one hand!?).

Education does work though, which I think is something these K-Pop SJWs like to ignore, because then they’ll have nothing to post about. (Other than, you know, shit that actually matters–but that stuff is scary and hard.Show Me the Money never even used to bleep the N-word out of raps; now it’s widely understood among Korean rappers that it’s better to avoid the use of that word (even though they’re not white). It’s an uphill climb, of course: Why would you expect anything else, especially given Korea’s demographics? Korea is a country with a 96% rate of ethic homogeny trying to remake itself into a multicultural society–that’s not going to happen without a few (more than a few) hiccups.

I just really hate this shit

Standard

OK,  I guess we’ll start with the neutral bit: Mwave reported that Wiz Khalifa will perform with Zico, Crush, and Dean at the MAMAs. You would think that that would be reliable, considering that Mwave and the MAMAs are both run by Mnet, but there doesn’t seem to be anything out there in the Korean news saying who, specifically, Khalifa will be performing with. So . . . maybe not.

Then we’ll jump to something unrelated but funny, because we’re all going to need a laugh in a minute here.

And then back to our depressing subject matter: So, the reason that the Khalifa story came up is that hip-hop and R&B has become more popular in Korea, and as a result, you’re seeing a bevy of Korean/American musical collaborations where many of the American musicians are African American. There’s Khalifa and Timbaland at the MAMAs, there’s Tablo and Eric Nam doing a song with Gallant, and there’s the potential collaboration between Rap Monster and Wale.

And, as night follows day, you’re seeing stuff like this:

screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-27-01-pmscreen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-26-18-pm screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-24-35-pmscreen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-27-49-pmscreen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-23-03-pm screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-28-14-pm screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-2-29-36-pm

I have a very hard time reading this kind of thing and not feeling like it fits quite nicely into the “keep Black people out of K-Pop” category.

Before you ask, yes, I did see all the “Get that white bitch out of that Bastarz video!” bullshit (and of course a lot of nastiness gets aimed at non-Korean Asians as well). But to me, that kind of thing is sooo painfully transparent and pathetic (“I AM AN INSECURE ASSHOLE!!! WHY DO PEOPLE LIKE OTHER GIRLS AND NOT ME!?!”) that it’s not usually worth remarking on.

What bothers me about the “keep Blacks out!” crap is how much misdirection there is–it’s always about laying the racism on somebody else. I mean, if you can’t distinguish between Wale and the hundreds of millions of other Black people on this planet, and because of Wale’s race, you can’t understand why he might be well-placed to help BTS, then it’s not exactly the fans who are the racist ones, right?

But the hypocritical finger-pointing just goes on. Are you a Korean musician? Do you pay African Americans to be in your hip-hop video? You’re racist! Do you take photos with Black fans? You’re racist! Do you braid your hair? You’re racist! Do you admire certain musicians who happen to be African American? FETISHIST!!!

Of course, if you’re an African American musician, you’re also racist! You have no respect for Korean musicians! You’re just going to Korea for money and/or sex. Plus you take drugs. (People who aren’t Black, in contrast, are never motivated by money, sex, or controlled substances. Especially not if they are celebrities.)

Gee, wouldn’t there be so much less racism–wouldn’t it all just be so much less problematicif all those pesky Black people just . . . stayed out of K-Pop? Went away? Evaporated altogether?

Or you know, maybe you could get that stick out of your ass and try to enjoy the music? Just a thought. . . .

ETA: OK, given the botched collaboration between Taeyeon and Khalifa, and the appalling response of some Taeyeon fans, I have to point out how stupid and counterproductive the racist shit is. African Americans are a more than $1 trillion market, plus they are younger than the average American and therefore have a disproportionate impact on U.S. popular culture.

If you think you are doing a K-Pop idol a favor by locking them out of a $1 trillion market, plus making it far less likely that they will be able to access the even larger mass American market, please please PLEASE wake up.

Things I have learned from SJWs today

Standard

  1. Koreans should never hire African Americans. This is a deeply racist practice that must be stopped. (Brought to you courtesy of the people who think that Korean musicians should never take pictures of themselves with African-American fans.)
  2. If you see a hip-hop music video, and you object to a visual element in the video, the person who only produced the music for the video and had nothing to do with directing the video is to blame.
  3. People who write hip-hop music, no matter how successfully or for how long, know nothing about hip-hop and should stop now.

Your queries: Answered! (Plus bonus hot guys!)

Standard

For whatever reason, I’ve gotten a slew of fairly entertaining search queries recently both here and at BlockB.com (along with the more-frequent “korean gay,” “zico racist,” and “kim kardashian bare ass”), so I thought I’d take a crack at answering some of these burning questions.

Does Taeil have tattoos?

Holy sweet mother of God, YES. There was a time when some of them were not real; that time has long since passed. Watching Taeil these past two years has been like watching a garden grow: His tattoos have spread from his shoulders down his arms to his hands, plus he’s getting more and more on his legs. He’s getting them joined up and having more-elaborate tattoos tattooed over his simpler ones–indeed, it is fair at this point to say that even Taeil’s tattoos have tattoos.

Taeil: Liking tattoos, big time.

Picture of Zico with girls.

The important thing to remember each and every time you see a picture of Zico with a girl is that he is dating that girl. This MUST be true, and there are NO exceptions.

DSC_2040_edited_1

You might think that that’s a hell of a lot of people to be dating all at once, but Zico and I are just very into polyamory (and effective time management)!

What does “I deep inside of you; I can’t get over” mean?

If you are a native English speaker conversant in 1970s American slang, it means (brace yourself), “My penis is fully inserted into your vagina; I cannot reach sexual climax.”

What were they trying to say? My understanding is that this is a translation of a Korean idiom, and that in Korean, to be deep inside a person means that you are obsessed with them and cannot think about anything else. So it was meant to mean, “I think about you all the time; I can’t move on” or something along those lines.

Translating idioms: Always perilous.

Do Americans think Asians are pretty?

It depends on the American (who may also be Asian), and it depends on the Asian (who may also be American).

Speaking for myself, I have always been very ecumenical in my tastes (with regard to race; with gender, not so much). So there are Asian men who I think are pretty (this will focus on East Asian men; trust me, I can do this with South Asian men or pretty much whatever kind of men you throw at me):

no-min-woo

large

Screen Shot 2015-10-12 at 9.04.31 PM

csi-2x2-ak6

I used to get so pissed when Archie was not on CSI.

There are Asian men who I think are handsome rather than pretty:

372beeb1ffb41ae47f457bc1ebaa11746c335c42

bts

lee-min-ho_gangnamblues-2

Your plastic surgeon has much to answer for.

There are Asian men who I think are neither handsome nor pretty, but are attractive to me nonetheless:

2mmhe76.jpg

Because he’s funny.

05-01(109)

I…I don’t know why!

And there are Asian men I think are ugly and unattractive. No pictures–I’m getting soft–but I will admit that, although I think he’s an excellent actor and have enjoyed many of his performances, strictly from a looks perspective I never got the big deal over Daniel Dae Kim.

What you need to be careful of are people who think that all Asians are pretty. That typically means that the person is a fetishist who is in love with an idea of what Asian people are like. The main issue with any kind of fetishist is that their idea of what [XXX] people are like usually runs along the lines of “Someone who will have sex with me and support me financially forever even though I am a worthless bastard with no redeeming qualities whatsoever.”

I hope that helps! And thank you for the opportunity to post lots of pictures of hot guys–I don’t usually do that sort of thing, and I’m beginning to understand why Kpopalypse does so many posts about boobs.

Terms used to describe Hyorin’s braids that I have seen today

Standard

HyorinPaloaltoZico

Ugly

A Damn Mess

Embarrassing

Fake

Shitty

Thuggish

But they’re not being racist because it’s Cultural Appropriation. Right.

Terms used to describe this look:

Bwa5K5_IAAA8c1Z.jpg-large

Genuine

Good

Awesome

Cute

Pretty

Oh, but it’s not just the (FAKEFAKEFAKEFAKE) HAIR, it’s the ENTIRE LOOK!!! Because this:

YTbW456

Was TOTALLY GENUINE AND SINCERE, 100% HYORIN, and NOTHING SHE WOULD EVER GET TIRED OF DOING!!! BY CHANGING HER LOOK HYORIN IS BETRAYING HER INNER SOUL!!!!!!

b8f452770d_barbie-1.png

Live in authenticity!

Guess what? You don’t know Hyorin, and neither do I. Yes, it’s a big shift in image, but for all anyone knows, the first picture might be how she’d rather dress.

And thuggish? Fuck you.

“HE IS A KOREAN MAN”

Standard

OK. I’ve debated about doing this post in the past, and I’ve decided against it time and time again, but I just saw a post on Tumblr about Zico’s recent box braids and how he should not wear them because “HE IS A KOREAN MAN.”

I’m not linking to it because it’s too dumb, and yes, I’ve put the person on ignore, but that comment so perfectly encapsulates the problems I have with the people who are all wound up about Zico’s hair.

Part of it is that I would certainly not appreciate a complete stranger thinking it was appropriate for them to judge for me what I am allowed to do because of my ethnicity, nationality or gender. So I take equal issue with some random idiot deciding that it is OK to tell someone else what to do because that person happens to be Korean, a man, or (sweet fancy Jesus!) A KOREAN MAN.

(Seriously: Why in God’s name do people think this is remotely acceptable? Fucking fetishists.)

But my main problem is: Ever notice something?

Zico can be blond.

Screen Shot 2014-08-03 at 1.21.51 PM Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 4.35.28 AM Bo9wxaBIAAAyaMg.jpg-large

That is OK. A KOREAN MAN whose hair is naturally black can be BLOND, and that is fine. No problem! No one even notices it, except to write articles about how great he looks blond.

When Zico wears hairstyles like this?

zicoprofileScreen Shot 2015-08-07 at 10.03.03 PM1741318_1633858253523725_1849915172_n

All of a sudden it’s this HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE problem, at least in certain circles.

Here is one of the best articles I’ve read lately about racism. Emphasis in the original.

Racism is not slavery. As President Obama said, it’s not avoiding the use of the word Nigger. Racism is not white water fountains and the back of the bus. Martin Luther King did not end racism. Racism is a cop severing the spine of an innocent man. It is a 12 year old child being shot for playing with a toy gun in a state where it is legal to openly carry firearms.

But racism is even more subtle than that. It’s more nuanced. Racism is the fact that “White” means “normal” and that anything else is different. Racism is our acceptance of an all white Lord of the Rings cast because of “historical accuracy,” ignoring the fact that this is a world with an entirely fictionalized history.

Even when we make shit up, we want it to be white.

And racism is the fact that we all accept that it is white. Benedict Cumberbatch playing Khan in Star Trek. Khan, who is from India. Is there anyone Whiter than Benedict fucking Cumberbatch? What? They needed a “less racial” cast because they already had the Black Uhura character?

That is racism. Once you let yourself see it, it’s there all the time.

YUP.

So, blond Zico is OK, but box-braid Zico is not. And RapMon should “play your own race” and avoid the African-American vernacular, because everyone’s “own race” is white, because white = normal.

Not only is the white vernacular normal, there’s also something horribly wrong with talking or looking like a filthy, shiftless, watermelon-eating . . . um, I mean, “cultural appropriation.” Yes. That’s what they mean when they object to A KOREAN MAN doing these things–that little PC fig leaf sure takes care of everything, doesn’t it?

Of course, white people can do whatever they fucking want, be it with their hair or otherwise. (White privilege!)

But non-whites have to be more careful: Since white is normal and neutral, everyone can go only one square over from the white norm. For example, you can be a white person with dreadlocks, or an Asian person who uses the white vernacular. But you cannot go two squares over, and become an Asian person with dreadlocks, or an Asian person who uses the African-American vernacular–or God forbid, an African-American K-Pop fan. That is unacceptable.