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Margaret Cho on Virginia Tech Shooting

Margaret Cho on Virginia Tech Shooting

Comedian Margaret Cho posted this very eloquently put blog entry on her official website entitled “Our Humanity”:

“Whenever anything really bad happens around Korean people, that is when I would like to hide, go to Hawaii and eat spam sushi until it blows over. I don’t want to comment on it because I don’t want to escalate the situation and I don’t want to implicate myself in it. I don’t want to ‘come out’ as Asian because therein lies a tremendous responsibility that I never volunteered for, that I don’t have any real control over, and that is as mysterious to me as it is to someone who isn’t Asian.

So here is the whole terrible mess of the shootings at Virginia Tech. I look at the shooter’s expressionless face on the news and he looks so familiar, like he could be in my family. Just another one of us. But how can he be us when what he has done is so terrible? Here is where I can really envy white people because when white people do something that is inexplicably awful, so brutally and horribly wrong, nobody says – “do you think it is because he is white?” There are no headlines calling him the “White shooter.” There is no mention of race because there is no thought in anyone’s mind that his race had anything to do with his crime.

So much attention is focused on the Asian-ness of the shooter, how the Korean community is reacting to it, South Korea’s careful condolences and cautiously expressed fear that it will somehow impact the South Korean population at large.

What is lost here is the grief. What is lost is the great, looming sadness that we should all feel over this. We lose our humanity to racism, time and time again.

I extend my deepest sympathies to all those who lost their loved ones, their children, their friends and family, in this unimaginable tragedy. I send them all the love I have in me, and I encourage everyone to do the same.”

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Posted to: Margaret Cho

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112 Comments

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# 1

:starts clapping:

# 2

DAMN RIGHT CHO! GET EM’!!!!!

# 3
Maria Mendez @ 04/20/2007 at 10:54 am

Absolutely perfectly said….just brilliant. Great comic, great social critic.

# 4

That was spot-on and beautifully said. I hope this gets circulated around the internet – it’s time that race became a non-issue.

# 5

Completely agree. Well said!

# 6

Truer words have never being spoken… ((((((((CLAPPING))))))
A very distrubed INDIVIDUAL did this, period….

# 7

That was the one of the best things I’ve heard about the subject. People need to stop making this a media frenzy and just let everyone mourn.

# 8

she is right, she should ******* hide … ewwwurrhhh

piper, with a low @ 04/20/2007 at 11:21 am

Excellent!

But sadly, this message won’t reach those who really need to hear it. As a people, we Americans tend to shrug things off too easily.

Um

If a white person shot up a school in Korea you better believe they’d point out his race. At least.

That’s where most visible minorities in America lose their credit. If it was an even split across the country then yes, she’d have a point. But it’s not so she doesn’t. And yes I realize that white people immigrated to this land too. But they built this country.

so true. if the shooter was white no one would mention his race.

+greenpeace+ @ 04/20/2007 at 11:29 am

well said! *joining the crowd, clapping*

He was a raving lunatic. His ethnicity is irrelevant (unless ofcourse diaspora had anything to do with him being a wingnut — and it didn’t, as it’s been said he was “not all there” prior to leaving his contry of origin).

I think maybe Margaret is a little too sensitive. I look at this guy and think what a psycho he is and not that he is Korean. Maybe I’m being naive but I think that most people think that way. In most cases you can’t look at a white person and know what nationality that person is. But with Asian people it’s pretty apparent.

I don’t think the news coverage of this person has been dwelling on his ethnicity. There has been a little coverage of how the Korean people feel shame – which they shouldn’t. I do think the new agencies have gone overboard on the coverage of the pictures, videos and writings he sent to NBC.

This is a human tragedy. Race should not place a part in this. Many of the victims were of different races, cultures and religious background. However, we know that the media likes to drag race into a tragedy in order to sensationalize and divide people. The shooter was a disturbed individual where many signs and warnings were ignored. My prayers and thoughts go out to the victims and their families.

Nicely put :) And by the way, she looks great!

blame the media

His ethnicity is NOT irrelevant. In S. Korea, if a white, black or any other race committed this crime, ethnicity would be a main talking point.

America is mainstream white and there is no escaping that fact (yet). Every time a black person commits a crime in the US race is mentioned. Hell, Black labour helped to “settle” America and Blacks are still considered outsideres. Miss Cho is way too sensitive!!!!

Deal with it. Blacks have for generations.

“So much attention is focused on the Asian-ness of the shooter, how the Korean community is reacting to it, South Korea’s careful condolences and cautiously expressed fear that it will somehow impact the South Korean population at large.”

It’s not just the media that mentions it. It’s the Koreans themselves who keep on dwelling on the fact that the gunman is Korean. It’s the Koreans who mention that they’re worried about being targeted because the gunman is Korean. It’s the Koreans who went out of their way to profusely apologize for what the gunman did even though he was a total stranger to many of them.

Koreans feel a collective sense of pride if a fellow Korean does good. They also feel a collective sense of shame if a Korean commits a heinous crime like this.

PinkRose: Read, and comprehension may just follow. His pathology and the heinous acts he commited were symptomatic of said pathology and not of his ethnicity.

This is about the victims, not about an ethnic group taking ownership of something horrific engineered by one of “their own”. Nor should this be used as a forum to advance your particular cause. It’s not the time for that.

This transcends race, religion and political orientation. Comprende?

yet another person looking for a reason to make people feel sorry for them because white people are so “racist”! **** u! if i went to korea and started shooting random people on the street, the headline would read “white woman is crazy!”

if other races don’t want to be treated differently, maybe they shouldnt ***** so much!

I applaud Pandora.

btw, Margaret looks fantastic!

“Deal with it. Blacks have for generations.”

PinkRose – do you realized how deep rooted your racism is. It’s the fact that you don’t even realize it that’s most disturbing. The U.S. is not Korea. We are made up of so many different races and variations of them so you cannot use the excuse, “if it was a white guy in Korea”.

There are so many American who’s whiteness is questionable and they call themselves white.
There’s cuban and Argentinian friends of mine that are whiter than any whites here. The same as latin people who are darker the the darkest black person in Africa and they are Latino.
Her point is that at this stage of the game and in this country, he should just be a guy who committed a horrible crime and not a “Korean guy”

The reality is that his ethnicity is mentioned. His family emigrated here when he was 8 and yet he is continually referred to as a South Korean Immigrant. Before they knew the identity of the killer, all they kept saying was that he was an asian mail.

We have a history of projecting the acts of minorities on the rest of the group. Post 9/11 muslims and middle easterners are all victimized by prejudice, harassment, and distrust. While one might say that it is b/c of national security, the reality is that when tragedies occur we focus so much on why why why and who who who that we forget that our true focus should be on the grieving individuals out there.

Let us not forget that after the Oklahoma City bombings the government blamed it all on al queda and were surprised when it was a white american grown Timothy Mcveigh.

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