Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park

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Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park

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[Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park]

[Josh Zepps:] Source: LYBIO.net
Let’s move on to job…

[Jason Linkins:]
If it’s a job…

[Josh Zepps:]
Cancel Colbert??? That’s what some Twitter users are demanding after the Colbert Report put out a now-deleted tweet reading “I am willing to show #Asian community I care by introducing the Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever.”

This set off a twitter firestorm late Thursday night with people sounding off “#CancelColbert cause we really don’t need another white liberal celebrity trying to justify racism.”

“Using satire that “ironically” ridicules Asians is not productive for indigenous nor any marginalized group. White humor blows. #CancelColbert”

And the one that started it all via Suey Park “White people, please keep #CancelColbert trending until there’s an apology. This is NOT the burden of people of color. Fix it. Do something.”

Joining us now is the author of that very same tweet, Suey Park, and also still with us is Huffpost politics reporter Jason Linkins. Thanks for being with us, Suey

[Suey Park:]
Of course, thanks for having me.

[Josh Zepps:]
Why cancel Colbert? What did you hope to achieve with that?

[Suey Park:]
Um, well, that’s a loaded question. I think it’s sad, but unfortunately a lot of times our demands aren’t really met unless we have really serious asks or we generate these larger conversations. Unfortunately people usually don’t listen to us when we’re being reasonable. So I think it’s really going to make a statement that this sort of thing happens weekly, that Asian-Americans are always a punch line. And so I think we’re just trying to make point that people will be held accountable the next time they do these sort of things.

[Josh Zepps:] Source: LYBIO.net
So just to clarify the context, the Tweet was related to a segment that was lampooning Dan Snyder, who’s the owner of a certain Washington D.C. football team that has a racist name.

[Suey Park:] Source: LYBIO.net
Of course.

[Josh Zepps:]
It was meant to be satire. I mean do you understand the point of satire? That you say something that’s intentionally absurd, in order to ridicule, not the people who are the target of what you’re saying, but other people who might say it?

[Suey Park:]
Of course I understand satire, I’m a writer. I think satire caters to the audience that you’re speaking to. So it says something about what the audience finds humorous or acceptable when you’re using those sort of jokes. And I think satire is supposed to punch up. Unfortunately he’s not doing that when he draws parallels to Orientalism to make a point about Native American mascots.

[Josh Zepps:]
But isn’t his point that there are lots of stupid racist people who even in their attempt to be conciliatory about race end up putting their foot in their mouth and saying something dumb?

[Suey Park:]
I really don’t think that we’re going to end racism by joking about it. Like I’m glad that the white liberals feel like they are less racist because they can joke about people that are more explicitly racist, but that actually does nothing to help people of color.

[Josh Zepps:]
Why – why attack a satirical attack on Dan Snyder’s racism instead of just attacking Dan Snyder’s racism?

[Suey Park:]
Well if you’re familiar with my activism or my work, I’ve been very vocal about native American mascots. I went to University of Illinois for my undergraduate career. We had Chief Illiniwek and I was incredibly vocal about it and I had the same sort of backlash. And that kind of backlash happens no matter what you’re really attacking, whether it be you know – the word Oriental being used as a slur, yellow face, jokes against Asian American people, or if I’m really just talking about native American mascots and Dan Snyder.

I know I helped trend Not Your Mascot on Super Bowl night, to fight the name redskins, and Not Your Tonto. And I had the same sort of backlash, so it really isn’t fair to kind of individualize these things and ask why I’m not shifting my behavior. Because honestly, if white liberals cared about really getting rid of the mascots, there’s a lot they can do to help organize or get involved, besides caring about their joke. So for them it’s not really about whether or not the redskins exist or whether or not racism is over, it’s really about them feeling like they can’t have fun anymore and feeling entitled to be able to laugh at things that aren’t really funny.

[Josh Zepps:]
Jason, part of the whole gag here is the use of the term Orientalism, which is such a weird, old, loaded, like it’s a stupid, stupid word. But to get upset about the use of that word when it’s in a satirical context, strikes me as misguided. I want to take a look at a Tweet that Colbert Report has tweeted out, says for the record…

[Suey Park:]
But, hold on, excuse me. As a white man, you don’t really…

[Josh Zepps:]
Hang on, hang on, hang on, Suey. I’ll come to you in just a second. “For the record ColbertReport is not controlled by Stephen Colbert or his show. He is @StephenAtHome Sorry for the confusion. Colbert himself has responded to some of the criticism on Twitter, “#CancelColbert – I agree! Just saw @ColbertReport Tweet. I share your rage. Who is that, though? I’m @StephenAtHome” Suey you were just going to jump in.

[Suey Park:] Source: LYBIO.net
Oh yeah, I was just going to say that I feel like it’s incredibly patronizing for you to paint these question this way. Especially as a white man I don’t expect you to be able to understand what people of color are actually saying with regards to cancel Colbert. He has a history of making jokes…

[Josh Zepps:]
Suey… Suey, being a white man doesn’t prevent me from being able to think and doesn’t prevent me from being able to have reasoned perspectives on things. I didn’t give up my right to be able to have an intellectual conversation when I was born.

[Suey Park:]
I know but white men definitely feel they’re entitled to talk over me, they definitely feel like they’re entitled to kind of minimalize my experiences, and they definitely feel like they are somehow exempt and somehow so logical compared to women who painted as emotional, right?

[Josh Zepps:]
No, no one is minimalizing your experiences, no one is minimaliazing your right to have an opinion, It’s just a stupid opinion. I mean it’s just a misunderstanding of what satire is and it’s misunderstanding of what irony is.

[Suey Park:]
You just called my opinion stupid. You just called my opinion stupid. That’s incredibly unproductive. And I don’t think I’m going to enact the labor of having to explain to you why that’s incredibly offensive and patronizing.

[Josh Zepps:]
Explain.

[Suey Park:]
I just told you I wouldn’t enact that labor.

[Josh Zepps:]
Ok! Thanks for being with us, Suey. Jason, what do you make of this?

[Jason Linkins:]
I don’t know, I just was informed by a young woman that I actually don’t have the right or the occasion to say anything on this matter, so I suppose I will decline out of respect for her.

[Josh Zepps:]
True. Good point, good point, as a white man, you’re not allowed to have any beliefs. Thanks for being with us Jason.

[Jason Linkins:]
Yeah.

[Josh Zepps:]
Great to talk to you.

[Jason Linkins:]
Sure thing.

[Josh Zepps:] Source: L Y B I O . N E T
Stay tuned, plenty more conversations are coming up right here on our first line.

Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park

Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park

Connect and Follow:

Josh Zepps (@joshzepps) | Twitter
https://twitter.com/joshzepps

Suey Park online has been deleted.

Josh Zepps Interviews Suey Park. You just called my opinion stupid. Complete Full Transcript, Dialogue, Remarks, Saying, Quotes, Words And Text.

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