Thursday, April 28, 2005

garden politics

A couple weeks ago, my mom told me that it was really important that I vote in the next primary because some korean dude is running for mayor of my hometown, sweet hometown, the glorious Edison. Great, I responded. What's his name? She shrugged her shoulders and replied, oh I dunno.

Thanks Mom. Now next time you ask me what my plans are for the "future" and forcefully recite a stunning array of options suggesting that maybe an entire solar system exists within one suburbian home and we live on different planets (too late for med school? I hear accounting is hottt. Those corporate lawyers, I hear that's good...) I will likewise shrug my shoulders and reply "oh I dunno" and I expect full acceptance as such.

Now I think it's great that Jun Choi is running in the primary against what Fiona Apple might call, if she cared to in that angry musical way of hers, some sort of machine, minus the extraordinary. Moving on from that awkward, unresounding play on non-released album titles, though there kind of is no way that Choi can win against the million-year incumbent Dem, I still think it's nice that he's running with that 0.5% window of "stranger things have happened". But it's nice; I'm an idealist in that angry musical way.

So yesterday, I hear indirectly from both foxes and an angry man who happens to be asian about the cream of the garden state's crop, two shmucks on a local jersey talk station, who got onto the topic of this mayoral candidate, worthless words à la racism.

Some choice tidbits from the transcript: (longer transcript and comments found here.
[Caller]: You just said it all, the last couple of ... callers, I guess they don't know that they live in America and we're being overrun. I had just moved out of Edison because of what has happened in the past 10 years... Orientals are all along, the whole complete route 27. And Indians have taken over Edison in north and all over.
[Carton]: Damn Orientals and Indians.
[Caller]: I..i moved out..36 years I've lived in Edison
[Carton]: And what was the biggest problem you had with the Orientals and the Indians ?
[Caller]: I can't handle them! There's no American people anymore.
[Carton]: Eh..
[Caller]: There shoving us the hell out!
[Carton]: It's like you're a foreigner in your own country isn't it?

Well I would be a little frightened too if a bunch of carpeting took over my town. Vacuuming's a bitch. Ahurhurhur. But their rhetoric (not sure if that's right word.. way of framing?) is definitely not unfamiliar and highlights the basic and seemingly impossible problem that undermines any efforts of responding effectively to racist remarks/ways of thinking. It's where, whatever all the worthless shit they say, they are categorically wrong and where it is perhaps most difficult to address, because logically, well, there is no logic: the reasoning that an American is not so simply because s/he is yellow brown green red blue just doesn't follow. How do you make Americans see other Americans as such? You! Green Grape! Don't you see that this Red one is also a Grape?! Do you not recognize grapiness? How do you solve this stupidly simple and so, an impasse, of a question?
Everyone's a little bit racist.
Kate Monster:
Well, it's a touchy subject.
No, not all Monsters are related.
What are you trying say, huh?
That we all look the same to you?
Huh, huh, huh?

1 comment:

Mitch said...

Actually Janet, Edison Township polling data shows that Jun Choi already has a lead on Spadoro, but that's only the case if both the Asian coummunity and the White folks in town actually come out and vote on June 7th. What is important to remember is that Spadoro barely won 4 years ago, so he is already very vulnerable, but its going to take real action from people like you... tell your friends, Edison votes for Jun on June 7th.