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PBA joins U.C. Berkley and NYTimes on Facebook for race relations talk

March 20, 2017

It's called Race/Related. The New York Times calls it provocative. It's the conversation of race in America. The Beacon joined a Facebook Live feed last week with schools like University of California Berkley led by New York Times reporter Rachel Swarns, and New Yorker editor and former New York Times journalist Mike Luo, who made headlines last year with the hashtag #thisis2016.

 

The hashtag was the beginning of a Twitter storm in which Asians around the country documented racism and race relations in America. In Oct. 2016 Luo and his family were approached by a woman on a sidewalk who shouted expletives at him and told his family to go back to China. He responded to the woman in the moment, as well as tweeting about the incident and writing an article in the New York Times that week.

 

Other Asian Americans were emboldened by Luo's actions to start the conversation about the Asian experience in the country.

 

"It's a different issue than blacks. The issue is an issue of otherness and belonging," Luo said.

 

The stereotype of Asians, according to Luo and others, is that they are educated and successful, and therefore do not need to be included in the conversation surrounding race.

 

The issue with this, Luo said, is that it ignores Asians who do not fit this stereotype and face instances of racism on a daily basis.

 

Over 300 comments can be seen on the video feed. Some said the idea of Asian racism is the result of liberal politics while others said it's an issue that deserves Americans' time.

 

The Beacon editor Celeste Brown asked three questions, one to include, "What are other resources to help facilitate race conversations and think critically of the topic?"

 

Another participant replied and said, "Great question...get them while they are young."

 

Participant Nicholas Alexander Lukito disagreed with Luo's view that racism against Asians exists.

 

"As an Asian myself, it is extremely disingenuous when we complain about racism when we do the best in school [and] are making the most money in America right now on average," Lukito said.

 

 

For more information, check out #racenyt on Twitter and visit https://www.nytimes.com/spotlight/race.

 

 

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