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Power dynamics: Asian (patriot) American vs (Real) America

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Hello guys,

I think this is quite interesting. Here is the short video. Below a concise analysis.

  1. Despite all his maturity and strength and courage, he still appears as someone who bought into "serving your country makes you part of a higher class", which is a lie served by the elite to the underclasses to encourage them to go to war and die for them. If you are part of a lower class before going to the military, newsflash: you're still part of a lower class after the military. Even if people at Starbucks tell you: "Thank you for your service".
  2. I think that by proving himself to be a patriot by showing his scars he gave away some power as someone looking for approval from the white (unnamed in this video but ever present) majority.
  3. I think he unfortunately bought into the lie that "in America we're all equals because the constitution says so". There are classes like everywhere in America. And more than in other places, your "race" (scientifically this concept does not exist) places you in a certain hierarchy within the socio-economic structures (a hierarchy within a hierarchy).
  4. You can see that despite him serving his country for 20 years, he's still labeled as an "asian American" by NBC, which shows that all American are not equals, despite what this (brave) man or the constitution says.
  5. The white woman looking at him with awe is still a white woman which highlights the contrast between the two: the people trying to get approval and

This is from a power dynamics point of view.

From a personal development point of view, this man is an example of standing up for himself, integrity, moral fortitude and strength. He's definitely a pro-social leader as he serves as an example for all people watching him. He's exemplary of visionary charisma. He has a vision of what the US should be (but he thinks they already are, hence the "vision") and this inspires him to act for the greater good, despite the possible social cost for him. In this case, he took a measured social risk in this situation, in my opinion as despite the ugly scars he knew he would still appear as a Hero, once for the acts that gave him the scars and a second time for showing them on TV as an asian American man.

For readers of this post: yes, there are two trains of thoughts and perspectives: Power Dynamics and Personal Development. They are complimentary to one another.

What do you think?

Cheers!

PS: please suggest a better title if you think of one.

Lucio Buffalmano, JM and selffriend have reacted to this post.
Lucio BuffalmanoJMselffriend
Quote from John Freeman on March 30, 2021, 4:47 pm

Hello guys,

I think this is quite interesting. Here is the short video. Below a concise analysis.

  1. Despite all his maturity and strength and courage, he still appears as someone who bought into "serving your country makes you part of a higher class", which is a lie served by the elite to the underclasses to encourage them to go to war and die for them. If you are part of a lower class before going to the military, newsflash: you're still part of a lower class after the military. Even if people at Starbucks tell you: "Thank you for your service".
  2. I think that by proving himself to be a patriot by showing his scars he gave away some power as someone looking for approval from the white (unnamed in this video but ever present) majority.
  3. I think he unfortunately bought into the lie that "in America we're all equals because the constitution says so". There are classes like everywhere in America. And more than in other places, your "race" (scientifically this concept does not exist) places you in a certain hierarchy within the socio-economic structures (a hierarchy within a hierarchy).
  4. You can see that despite him serving his country for 20 years, he's still labeled as an "asian American" by NBC, which shows that all American are not equals, despite what this (brave) man or the constitution says.
  5. The white woman looking at him with awe is still a white woman which highlights the contrast between the two: the people trying to get approval and

This is from a power dynamics point of view.

From a personal development point of view, this man is an example of standing up for himself, integrity, moral fortitude and strength. He's definitely a pro-social leader as he serves as an example for all people watching him. He's exemplary of visionary charisma. He has a vision of what the US should be (but he thinks they already are, hence the "vision") and this inspires him to act for the greater good, despite the possible social cost for him. In this case, he took a measured social risk in this situation, in my opinion as despite the ugly scars he knew he would still appear as a Hero, once for the acts that gave him the scars and a second time for showing them on TV as an asian American man.

For readers of this post: yes, there are two trains of thoughts and perspectives: Power Dynamics and Personal Development. They are complimentary to one another.

What do you think?

Cheers!

PS: please suggest a better title if you think of one.

May I ask if you are a right-wing Asian? Of course you don't have to answer if it is too personal.

I agree that this Chinese American is seeking approval from the main-stream society. At the end of the day, Chinese American is a minority without strong political power.

You point 5 might be not completed, I think

Quote from selfriend on March 30, 2021, 6:59 pm

May I ask if you are a right-wing Asian? Of course you don't have to answer if it is too personal.

Of course you may ask. Why are you asking this? I don't see the relationship between your question and the post.

You point 5 might be not completed, I think

Thanks, here it is:

5. The white woman looking at him with awe is still a white woman which highlights the contrast between the two: the people trying to get approval and the people giving their approval.

Quote from John Freeman on March 30, 2021, 8:07 pm
Quote from selfriend on March 30, 2021, 6:59 pm

May I ask if you are a right-wing Asian? Of course you don't have to answer if it is too personal.

Of course you may ask. Why are you asking this? I don't see the relationship between your question and the post.

You point 5 might be not completed, I think

Thanks, here it is:

5. The white woman looking at him with awe is still a white woman which highlights the contrast between the two: the people trying to get approval and the people giving their approval.

1 . Serving the country never boost your status. Winning the wars will.

2. By saying that a group of people "is seeking approval", the speaker is implying that that group is of low value and status, and the people giving approval is at high status. From your previous philosophy, I guess you won't be devaluing yourself or your group. For example, you could've say that this Vet was being assertive instead of seeking approval.

While blacks and women sought and got "approval" from the mainstream, Chinese American is much more complicated group. Chinese American is a loosely defined term for a loosely connected group. Some subgroups do seek approval from the WASP, others might not be seeking approval or even not approving the "mainstream". For example, some of them are hardly brainwashed by TV, Hollywood movies, or other pop cultures. They also hardly ever make friends outside of their ethnics. Not seeking approval is one of the main reasons that Chinese are less included or even discriminated by the mainstream.

Well, although not-seeking approval is somewhat admirable, I think this had done more harm than good for them, in my own opinion.

3.  The economy structure is very complicated. WASP and Jews do not control every bit of it. So the common-sensual  "hierarchy" defined by WASP is not necessarily the whole picture. For a simple example, you could find the stats on "the percentage of an ethnic group with an income greater than the national median". Asians are among the top. Well, of course, we could still say that Asians are just middle class workers and workers are still low in the hierarchy, but by the same logics, some WASP being at the top-top does not mean that the majority of WASP is at the top.

 

 

 

To answer your question, I'm not a right-wing asian. Thanks for elaborating. I did not pretend that the majority of WASP is at the top. I'm not trying to be right here or to talk about politics. I'm analysing this man's position in society in relation to his speech and mindset viewed through power dynamics. I'm talking about this man's particular case.

 

 

Great analysis, John!

It takes courage to make such an analysis when the man in the video is being so courageous, vulnerable, and emotionally "moving".

So this is an equally brave and - and very realistic- analysis as well.

"Belonging" is such an easy hook on men to latch onto some good-old group-based manipulation.
In this, case, it's nationalism and patriotism.

And I say that as a guy who used to be very patriotic.
Patriotism is not something I lost, it's something I improved upon.
My patriotism and my belonging are not based on something I haven't chosen, like skin color, nationality, or gender, but based on values I have chosen and people I chose to associate with.

It's not the drive that it's missing.
And not even the gullible romanticism of beliving in ideals -I'm actually easy to fall for that romanticism-.
And I might even embrace weapons and risk my life one day for certain values. But it's about channeling it right. Fuck the draftsman if I will ever fight for a piece of land, a piece of colored cloth (flag), oil, or because some politicians got angry with some other politicians.

I'd proudly be a deserter in that case.

I'm with Mohammad Ali here:

No Vietcong ever called me a nigger.

And he went to prison instead of joining the military.

This man's idealism of "everyone equal and the same" is also a big lie, and very much unnatural to humankind.
It's another lie that anyone can expect equality just because it's written on a piece of paper.

What he got is what you get when you fall for manipulation: you believed in something, and instead, you get the short end of the stick.
It's never too late to wake up, but I'm sure this man would probably get angry if anyone were to tell him "you believed a lie".

John Freeman and JM have reacted to this post.
John FreemanJM
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

I agree the statement, "we are all the same, we are equal" is not a true statement.

But the part in the constitution that he is referring to 5th and 14th:
"No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law"
and
"Nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process"

Aren't these in place as correctional mechanisms, in the case of  a tyrannical state? Or despot state? In this sense, despite the inequality amongst people. There is a common thread of inherent worth amongst each individuals that is being conveyed in these statements. I believe that's what he is referring to.

It is naive to expect equality, just because it's on paper - and I agree. But isn't it also true, that this is the reason why they established the constitution? Is because they expect tyranny and needed to have something in place to correct it in the case that it comes?

JM, I will precise what I believe that all humans have the same inherent value as living organisms. I do believe we're equal in the sense that deep down not anyone of us deserves to live more than another one. On a philosophical level, that is. We're all entitled to life like all other living organisms.

However, it seems obvious to me that we are not equal in the distribution of resources, knowledge, etc. Based on this inequality, there are other inequalities: in front of the law, if you're a lawyer you are better off, etc.

Of course, a text of law can state this equality. However, this does not mean this equality is real. The US is one of the most unequal country in the World. It is in-between Cote d'Ivoire and Argentina.

I've travelled to Northern European countries and they are the most equal countries on economical and gender level. However, I'm not sure that if you're black or Chinese, you're welcome with open arms. I mean: there is a difference between theory and reality.

Laws work. However, I lived for a year in the US and I could not help but notice that the high level of corruption allowed private interests to change the laws in their favour. So, reality is more complex: culture have to support the laws and the laws must be defined in a fair process. Because the laws don't get made by people representing the population in the US (most are rich people coming from rich family, so it is more like an oligarchy/plutocracy), then the outcome is the one we observe: a fight of private interests (example. CNN vs Fox).

The US is a racist country. This is not an insult. It is a country based on race. All the statistics, science, forms, etc. divide the society in white, blacks, hispanics and asians, which is very arbitrary by the way. What I mean is that from the ground up and the culture, it is based on races. In my country there is not such a divide. There is racism, but the fabric of the society is not racist. When I had to enter the US, I had to state my "race": it is the first and only time in my life somebody asked my "race". I even had to call the lab I was going to work to know my race. Because I'm of mixed origins. This is why I could not live in the US: I cannot live in a racist society. I learned in secondary school that there were no races (and confirmed it later in my scientific education) and here is a country entirely based on this concept.

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Lucio BuffalmanoStefJMselffriend

My view is that inequality is here to stay, and I'm okay with that. It's a result of the ever-enduring struggle for power. It's also the result of having any form of value structure. This is my understanding.

My only contrary point, is that I understand the constitution as something that was created to counter-act tyrannical forces. You agreed about inherent value. And so I understood the constitution as something that was created to protect inherent value. The way it is actually worded isn't against hierarchies and status stratification, etc... but rather against things like slavery.

So I don't look at it as a lie, I look at it as a value to uphold. Whether or not it is being enacted however, is another issue. But it does serve as a good principle.

The reality is the world is unequal. So yes, I agree with this. But does that have to mean that constitution is a lie? What if, for example, the constitution contains ethically sound behavior that's difficult to carry out?

Unfortunately the real linguistics used in the constitution is not the same as that guy in the video. "Equality" is not used in the wording.
Take this for example, the fifth of the constitution says this I think,
""No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law"" - > I think that's talking about inherent worth/value.

John Freeman has reacted to this post.
John Freeman
Quote from JM on March 31, 2021, 7:24 am

My view is that inequality is here to stay, and I'm okay with that. It's a result of the ever-enduring struggle for power. It's also the result of having any form of value structure. This is my understanding.

Agreed.

My only contrary point, is that I understand the constitution as something that was created to counter-act tyrannical forces. You agreed about inherent value. And so I understood the constitution as something that was created to protect inherent value. The way it is actually worded isn't against hierarchies and status stratification, etc... but rather against things like slavery.

So I don't look at it as a lie, I look at it as a value to uphold. Whether or not it is being enacted however, is another issue. But it does serve as a good principle.

I don't look it as a lie either. We actually agree. If the text is to make sure all humans are treated equally, I'm 100% for it. The lie is to tell common people that the reality they're living in IS the one described in the text. It is not. For instance, here is article 25 of the universal declaration of human rights:

1. Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.

I don't think it's a lie. But telling people that this article is a reality is a lie. You see?

So we actually agree. I believe in the power of law and philosophy to regulate human behaviour. In reality, that is all we can do to make sure it stands the test of time: written laws. So people cannot change it on a whim because it suits them.

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JMselffriend
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