Heaven is a Playground: FIBA World Cup 2014 — Human nature, Gilas Pilipinas and Andray Blatche’s redemptionFriday, September 12th, 2014
Human Nature is about as fickle as an 8-year-old boy chasing tumbleweeds through the backwoods of Georgia, or so I’m told.
Why are we so quick to judge and falsely label others, when we all know too well the feeling of having our insides ripped apart by the cattle prod of erroneous expectations?
I vividly remember my charter school basketball team playing a team with an Asian player. All game, on the bench, one of our guys called him “Yao” and “Soy Sauce.”
Given the level of disrespect hoisted upon us by bigger high schools, you would think we’d have developed an intrinsic appreciation for others not fitting the stereotype: They thought we sucked because we didn’t have our own gym; we thought he sucked because of our perception of Asians.
As the old New York City parable goes: The Italians beat up the Irish, so in turn the Irish beat up the Jews.
Remember when Carmelo Anthony, Jeremy Lin’s then teammate, publicly ridiculed Lin’s potential contract extension as “ridiculous”? Or how about when an ESPN anchor referred to him as a “chink”? Or, what about Jason Whitlock playing the all too familiar Asian Men have a small endowment card? Ten years prior to “Linsanity,” Shaq said about a rookie Yao Ming, that he was going to drop step and put an elbow into his face. Around the same time, Chris Tucker went for the easy laugh in Rush Hour, hitting Jason Whitlock’s familiar punch line as an Asian dude’s towel came off.
These are just a few of the more visible examples of the perpetuating emasculation of Asian men. I’m probably guilty of it as well — most of us are.
Lets face it, despite outperforming every ethnic group in this country academically and socio-economically, Asians, especially Asian men, still get no respect in mainstream American society. It’s all mathletics, small dicks and hello kitty backpack jokes.
Which brings me to Gilas Pilipinas. I wonder how many players on the Philippine National Team have, at some point, suffered the same indignation as the kid I played against in High School? (more…)