That is precisely how I feel when I consider my own journey, my own family’s travels. For here I am now, standing in a new country. Not as an expatriate or a resident alien, but as a citizen. And as I survey this realm — this Republic of Privilege — I realize certain things, things that my mother and father might also have realized about their new country a generation ago. I realize that my entry has yielded me great opportunities. I realize, as well, that my route of entry has taken a certain toll. I have neglected my ancestral heritage. I have lost something. Yes, I can speak some Mandarin and stir-fry a few easy dishes. I have been to China and know something of its history. Still, I could never claim to be Chinese at the core.
Yet neither would I claim, as if by default, to be merely “white inside.” I do not want to be white. I only want to be integrated. When I identify with white people who wield economic and political power, it is not for their whiteness but for their power. When I imagine myself among white people who influence the currents of our culture, it is not for their whiteness but for their influence. When I emulate white people who are at ease with the world, it is not for their whiteness but for their ease. I don’t like it that the people I should learn from tend so often to be white, for it says something damning about how opportunity is still distributed. But it helps not at all to call me white for learning from them. It is cruel enough that the least privileged Americans today have colored skin, the most privileged fair. It is crueler still that by our very language we should help convert this fact into rule. The time has come to describe assimilation as something other than the White Way of Being.
“A Romantic is someone who asks when you would like to see them. When you answer the next morning they hop a red-eye across the country that night. Romantics make good friends. Movies suggest we should marry romantics. In the movies romantics, after their initial burst of passion, which is only for you, become stable and not at all like cats chasing a flash of light across the floor. In real life romantics are terrible lovers after the first few weeks. They airbrush people and situations in their mind, fill in the lines with fantasy. They were doing this long before Maxim or Playboy. Romantics were airbrushing before the birth of Christ, before anyone invented the term.”—Stephen Elliott
“I like the right side, in the back corner, when the elevator becomes crowded. It is odd yet existentially endearing, perhaps even beautiful, to think of how a group of strangers who would otherwise never share a silent minute or two in a metal box now have this moment together, and to dismiss this moment as either a modern inconvenience or banal imperative throughout their day, into the week, into the months which tumor into the full metastasis of their lives.”—Jimmy Chen, (Elevator Emotions, Thought Catalog)
“A girl with a book is innately attractive; men understand that if she can tolerate the act of reading for the sake of pleasure, she’ll likely put up with all manner of nonsense for the sake of a relationship.”—Jack Cazir (“Dating In A Ghost Town,” Thought Catalog)
“Would that all your future relationships could end in hate. Blinding, final hate — fiery like Cortez and his ships. Permanent. Something so explosive it propels you forward. Means it’s too painful to look back.”
“In the face of the Communist challenge we must examine honestly the weaknesses of traditional capitalism. In all fairness, we must admit that capitalism has often left a gulf between superfluous wealth and abject poverty, has created conditions permitting necessities to be taken from the many to give luxuries to the few, and has encouraged small-hearted men to become cold and conscienceless so that, like Dives before Lazarus, they are unmoved by suffering, poverty-stricken humanity. Although through social reform American capitalism is doing much to reduce such tendencies, there is much yet to be accomplished.”—
Martin Luther King, Jr. (How Should A Christian View Communism?)
As well as remembering all that he did, today is about recognizing what remains to be done. (via superfluidity)
“My God, there have been more tears shed on reality TV than by all the war widows in the world. Are we so raw? It must be so. There are simply too many of them – too many shows and too many people on the shows – for them not to be revealing something endemic. This is us, a people of savage sentimentality, weeping and lifting weights.”—John Jeremiah Sullivan (Pulphead) (via millionsmillions)
“In music, the E chord is “supposed” to lead to an A chord, so when it leads to an F chord instead, colors shift slightly and deepen, like you’re suddenly staring through a small square window into the eyes of the girl you know you’ll marry.”—
Jerry nodded. “Some people use honesty like a weapon.”
“Like a switchblade,” I said. “Like a bayonet. They slice up your heart with all these ugly, hurtful words and then, while you’re bleeding on the floor, they hand you a Band-Aid: ‘I was only being honest.’ ”
Kim McLarin (“Race Wasn’t an Issue to him …”, Modern Love, New York Times)
I’ve been going through Modern Love archives, thought this was casual but true.