Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Why do we do this???

I recently recalled the offensive term, “bruised banana.” In case you are not up on your racist slurs, a “bruised banana” is an Asian person who acts Black, identifies more with Black culture, or is “yellow on the outside and black in the inside.” I know it is horrible, and I neither promote nor condone its usage. I do not know who comes up with these sorts of things, but it is shit like this that makes us more cognizant of our differences rather than our similarities.

But these terms are out there, being used by some, and provoking all sorts of negativity. I tried to remember some other terms I have heard in my lifetime through various sources. I googled it to see if a site documented racial slurs, and sure enough, it is out there.

I compiled a sample list of terms relating to Asians (or “Orientals” as my Chinese-American boss would say) with the explanation in parentheses:
-Can’ardly (“They can’ardly see”; originated in Australia)
-FOB (“Fresh Off the Boat”)
-Jaundy Boy (Comes from Jaundice (Hepatitis), which turns your skin yellow)
-Nikon (Popular brand of camera. Asian tourists are known to take a lot of photos)
-Nine Iron (Golf club ostensibly resembling stereotypical Asian ‘slanted’ eyes)
-Nuprin (“Little, yellow, different”)
-Oreo (Bastardized form of ‘Oriental’)
-Pancake / Panhead (Facial characteristics)
-Ping-pang (Mimics the way their language sounds to non-Asians)
-SBH (Represents their Straight Black Hair)
-Slantey-eye’d / Slit / Squint / Squnity (Referring to the eyes)
-Table Face (They tend to have flat faces)
-Tape Head (Slanted eyes as if someone pulled back their eyes using Scotch tape)
-Twinkie (“Yellow on the outside, white on the inside”)
-Zipperhead (Coined by U.S. soldiers during Korean War because if Asians were shot in the head with high-powered weapons, their heads would split as if you unzipped them)
Although all are disturbing, I am particularly disgusted by the last one. Imaginably, wouldn't any person's head "split like a zipper" if you shot them in the head with a high-powered gun? I'd like to think so.
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