Thursday, May 11, 2017

Sometimes I Would Love to Go Off

My response to a social network, unnamed, that I don't want to post to out of shear rage.

Context: A person stated "economic woes" were why people voted for Trump. I sent this clear article countering the STUPID REPEATED ARGUMENT.

Then the individual dropped the "identity politics" argument and the "not ALL are deplorable, quit demonizing." Followed by "policies that are supported by all that effect change must be bipartisan."

Shudder, I do declare!

What I didn't say:

Identity politics is a convenient term for people of privilege.

Change will not come by capitulating to a side that chooses racism, xenophobia and party over country. You either face the actual problems facing this nation or never see real change. Like how is this difficult? "Demonize?" They are deplorable.

I'm sorry if someone stating the fact that racism was the motivating factor behind Trump loyalty makes you uncomfortable, but that's on you.

Policies that are of concern that can effect real change (in no particular order):

  • End gerrymandering
  • Stop all voter suppression
  • Strengthen public education
  • Medicare for All
  • Fair and non-xenophobic immigration policies
  • End police brutality
  • Tax the 1% in regards to SS, Healthcare, Wall St. transactions, etc.
  • Impeach Trump
  • Also too, sexism. More women have signed up to run for office. That's energizing. That's addressing actual problems. 
  • Also, also too, singing songs of the bipartisan fairy while someone takes away rights from your friends, family members and loved ones is deplorable! 
We need to keep fighting. We need to keep resisting. Fake allies are the worst. 

I am Frank Chow and I approved this message


Desert Son said...


I shall now engage in the recursive act of apologizing for not responding to your previous response in which you apologized for not responding earlier to my antecedent comment from the first quarter of the year. The comments are going Mandelbrot! And, anyway, it’s your blog; your response and schedule are yours to make, and I would be a poor guest if I imagined otherwise.

Thank you for your reply. Condolences on the loss of your valued friend and colleague, whose work contributed importantly to the betterment of this endeavor in our nation and on this chunk of space debris.

My delay owes to anxiety. I find myself torn between the desire to remain informed as a duty of good citizenship, and the despairing rage that rises when I actually do attend the news. I have to take frequent breaks.

I must also acknowledge that such anxiety emerges in part as an aspect of my privilege, fortunate as I have been to spend much of my life in a nation with a government—for all its shortcomings and imperfections—largely stable. Though perhaps even that fails to acknowledge the complexity of history. Maybe there is advantage in shining light on the dark corners of the apparatus, that we finally see the pathogens and vectors.

So I continue to peek at the news, like a frightened film-goer in a horror movie glancing between laced fingers at the awful, stalking thing: orange, petulant hands clutching, blind to itself, convinced that lashing out is greatness, loveless even amidst sycophants. Bad enough, and yet still worse, attended as it is by a collection of wretched goblins, unable or unwilling to be better.

May I share an anecdote? I love seeing the avatar of the late, great Bruce Lee on your Twitter feed, and it takes me back to about age 27. I got it into my head that I wanted to get into shape, but not just any shape! I wanted to get into Bruce-Lee-circa-Enter-the-Dragon shape. I mean, the man looked like he was made of steel cable. So I read Lee’s book on Jeet Kune Do. It’s interesting, by the way, if you’re unfamiliar with it. I expected it to be like many martial arts books I’d scanned over the years, largely instructional, diagrams on techniques, and very ordered, and . . . it wasn’t. It’s more like a philosophy text (which makes sense), and it doesn’t actually go into the logistics of specific techniques so much as it talks about, well, “being,” I suppose. Instead of IKEA-instructions on how to block, or throw, or kick, it contains things like his diet, and his reflections on life and experience.

It also contains details of his exercise regimen.

I laughed the first time I read through that portion, not because it was hilarious, but because I was hopeless. I still chuckle to remember it now. But reading his workouts prompted an important, two-part realization for which I’m still grateful. The first part was, “Oh, right, this was his job. He didn’t sit at a computer terminal much of the day going over Excel sheets and emails.” The second part was that—available time aside—I was never going to look like Bruce Lee, because of some basic morphological differences that owed to a long series of reproductive chance intersecting various environmental and decision-making factors.

I learned that I could still get into shape and I could work toward better health and never look like Bruce Lee. And that was o.k. I’m still working on my health to this day, and I’d wager that was the kind of thing Lee Jun-fan would have advocated more than a particular visible presentation of physical ideal.

I learned that from Bruce Lee, around 27 years after his death. Hell of a good teacher.

I hope this finds you and your loved ones well. I continue to try and check in, when I’m not panicking or furious over the state of things, over the lies and the hatred and the fear and the theft and the cruelty. Thank you again for your time, the work you do, your presence and voice, your perspective and experience, your instruction.

Still learning,


Desert Son said...


From your 11 August 2017:

"Why does every non-Chinese culture in America try to claim Bruce Lee like he's there's?"

And, of course, my post above was about Bruce Lee! (I have many days where I think I should probably just stop communicating with anyone, at all.)

With apologies if my reflections amounted to little more than appropriation. Thank you again for your work.

Still learning,


Asian-American Pundit said...

Thanks for reaching out Robert!

No worries, it's all a growth process and learning from Bruce is different than appropriating him. He should be a role model when it comes to overcoming, discipline and mastery of one's craft.

I appreciate you posting, asking questions, and your willingness to listen. Keep checking in!