Google released its diversity data last week. UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh argued in the Washington Post that despite the perception of Silicon Valley as a “white man’s world,” the fact that 30 percent of Google’s workforce is Asian shows that they’ve overcome “overwhelming odds” and proves the “essential fairness of the American capitalist system.” If that didn’t drive the point home, then the title of Volohh’s title did: How the Asians Became White.
And yes, “the Asians” is actually in the title, helping to drive home the fact that the argument is based on the idea of one monolithic Asian community.
Scot Nakagawa responded over at RaceFiles and took Volokh to task:
Talk about manipulative. Volokh’s long history of arguing that claims of racism in the U.S. are exaggerated to one aside, the last time I checked, most Asians don’t even identify as “Asian,” and instead identify by ethnicity, recognizing that the racial category “Asian,” as it is used by people like Volokh, lumps together ethnic groups that have very little in common in order to arrive at averages and medians that suggest we are heroes of a Horatio Alger-style myth of cross-racial mobility in America. In reality, not all Asians have made it, and even those of us who have done pretty well in the U.S. aren’t doing nearly as well as white people.
Nakagawa goes on to cite U.S. war refugees from countries like Cambodia and Vietnam who make up some of the poorest ethnic groups in the country, and then doubles down on the essential problem with the model minority myth: “Volokh dehumanizes Asians by turning us into a shield against racism in order to make what amount to racist arguments.” Read more at RaceFiles.