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Fri May 19, 2017, 11:48 AM

Westernized!

Let me start off by saying I'm VERY proud of my Chinese/Malaysian heritage and background. I moved to the United States since I was 13 to attend school and haven't been to Kuala Lumpur other than to visit family. I consider myself primarily westernized as American culture and ways are what pretty much shaped to adult I am now. However, part of me feels shunned by some Asian communities when I can't speak Mandarin as if I'm an outcast or something and it bothers me because these are Asians living in the same country I am ridiculing me for not speaking their language?
Anyway, my point here is that being westernized shouldn't be considered a sin to the Asian community but I guess ignorance is everywhere.

6 replies, 6097 views

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Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
Reply Westernized! (Original post)
JuJuYoshida May 2017 OP
grantcart May 2017 #1
JuJuYoshida May 2017 #3
JuJuYoshida Jun 2017 #6
luvMIdog May 2017 #2
JuJuYoshida May 2017 #4
yuiyoshida Jun 2017 #5

Response to JuJuYoshida (Original post)

Fri May 19, 2017, 12:15 PM

1. Salamat Datang


I lived in Kuala Lumpur in 1979 during the refugee crises there and really enjoyed Malaysians.

The question on whether you can speak Malay or Mandarin wasn't yours, it was the result of the decision your parents made to send you to the US for education. Many Chinese Malay families sent their children to the US, Canada or Australia once it became clear that the political situation in Malay was becoming uncertain for Malays of Chinese descent. That uncertainty is the result of reasonable concerns that ethnic Malays have that they would become a minority as a result of aggressive immigration policies by the British. The Malay reaction is understandable but the inequality of the British Colonial history fell to the shoulders of people like your parents.

I would venture that people in the "Asian" community don't really hold it against you as much as you miss that part of your history.

It is interesting to note that a lot of Mexican American parents who arrived in the 50's and 60's forbid any Spanish to be spoken in their household and there are many second generation Mexican Americans in their 40's who have had to go back to school to learn Spanish because they want to help their children learn Spanish.

I wouldn't put too much weight on what other people think you should or shouldn't do, the real question is what do you want to do. If you want to learn Mandarin (or Malay) it has never been easier with great Community College courses and good on line assistance.

In the meantime when you get homesick make some great Satay and Gado Gado.

http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/vegetables-recipes/gorgeous-gado-gado/

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Response to grantcart (Reply #1)

Fri May 19, 2017, 01:54 PM

3. Thank you!

This made me feel better and really shed a light on things, thank you!

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Response to grantcart (Reply #1)

Thu Jun 8, 2017, 03:15 PM

6. Thank you, I think you provided the correct insight

And I really don't get all that offended as I know they don't truly mean harm but one should not just go up to you and start speaking Mandarin just because you look Chinese. My choice was to not learn Mandarin for the sole purpose of well, I simply have no need to learn it living in the States. Living so close to the border I may turn my head towards Spanish, which would be VERY useful, especially in my current career as a civil servant. Thank you for your response, I appreciate it!

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Response to JuJuYoshida (Original post)

Fri May 19, 2017, 12:22 PM

2. people with different ethnic & cultural backgrounds also go through this

If they are raised here they are told they don't speak *insert language here* like someone who comes from there..don't dress the same..have different values.. etc. I think these people often feel perpetually caught in the middle like they neither belong here or there until they just begin to really really love their uniqueness and embrace it. From any culture I think I would avoid the people who like to ridicule someone for no good reason. A pearl is a pearl wherever you find it. You don't have to be this or that. You are you gather the pearls you treasure and leave the rest for someone else. I don't know if I am making any sense to you or not, but I tried lol (((hug)))

edited to add: oops I did not see that this post was in the Asian group until after I posted. Sorry. I thought it was in the DU lounge. I'm not Asian. BUT I love Malaysian food

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Response to luvMIdog (Reply #2)

Fri May 19, 2017, 01:55 PM

4. thank you! no really, it was very heartfelt & I appreciate it!

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Response to luvMIdog (Reply #2)

Thu Jun 8, 2017, 03:09 PM

5. Everyone is allowed to post in the Asian group

We have no restrictions here other than what's posted here:
https://www.democraticunderground.com/12502043

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