August 14, 2008

Narrow eyes

Ina and I had a pretty good laugh after I showed her this picture, which has sparked a lot of controversy over the past few days. I've had some interesting conversations about this with various people. Since Jose Calderon is in the photo, there's been a bit of hoopla coming out of the Raptors community. Apparently some people feel Jose Calderon must be a racist based on this photo where he is spreading his eyes apart and supposedly offending all Chinese people as a result.

For me, it seems harmless enough. I happen to have narrow eyes, I was born this way and it is part of my identity. That got me thinking about what they could have done that REALLY would have offended me. I came up with a few ideas:

How about trying to make a mockery out of what was easily the most spectacular Olympic opening ceremonies in history of the world? How about if they blamed a bunch of accidents on Chinese people, who obviously purposely used toxic materials to make toys so that they could harm children? Oh, maybe they could make fun of our culture and diet, how we eat things that are absolutely disgusting that makes you want to puke. The Chinese won double gold in team gymnastics? There could be no other explanation other than that the Chinese were under-age, after all they've been lying about their age for years. Chinese people are all a bunch of liars. How about a picture of the Spanish basketball team all wearing gas masks because apparently the Beijing air is toxic and if you breathe it you will die, and 16 million people living there must be mutated because otherwise how else could they possibly breathe?

You want to offend Chinese people, see the above for ideas. Oh wait, they've all been done before.

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