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Oh, how that sneaky Rep. Joseph Cao (R-LA) toys with our emotions! We never know how we’re gonna feel about him (okay, pretty sure we love the guy–but he sure can bum us out) on any given day. He’s always so full of surprises!
Earlier this week, during BP America President Lamar McKay‘s public shaming congressional testimony regarding the Gulf oil spill, Cao said what we’re sure lots of people are thinking, but would never say aloud:
“Mr. Stearn asked Mr. McKay to resign. In the Asian culture we do things differently. During the Samurai days, we would just give you a knife and ask you to commit Hari-Kari [sic]. My constituents are still debating on what they want me to ask you to do, but that being said, the cleaning up process has been a disgrace and the claims process has been dismal…”
Of course the comments were extreme and Cao has since stated that they were meant only to convey his level of frustration with BP, but dayum! We couldn’t have scripted his words better if we tried ( okay, we did try, but it wasn’t any better).
Rep. Joseph Barton (R-TX), on the other hand, did the opposite this week. When it was his turn to speak during BP CEO Tony Hayward’s public shaming congressional testimony, he said what nobody else would say aloud, and uh, NOBODY ELSE WAS THINKING:
Filed under: Apologies, BP, BP America President, BP CEO, Congressional Testimony, Culf Coast, Culf of Mexico, Gulf Coast Oil Spill, Gulf Coast Oil Spill Clean-up, Hardass Asian Politicians, Harikiri, Investigation, Joseph Barton Apologizes for Apologizing to BP, Joseph Barton Apologizes to BP, Joseph Cao, Lack of Preparasian, Lamar McKay, Louisiana, Political Suicide, Politicians, Public Apologies, Rep. Joseph Barton, Rep. Joseph Cao, Republicans, Ritual Suicide, Texas, Tony Hayward
Y’all know we’ve always thought Ann Curry was a robot. A really silky-voiced, smooth-skinned, awkward-dancing, non-aging robot programmed to never have her lipstick smudge and to have a fangirl’s devotion to Brad Pitt.
BUT WE WERE WRONG.
Because over the weekend, Ann Curry made a mistake. While giving the commencement address at Wheaton College in Massachusetts, she confused it with the Wheaton College in Illinois by citing the latter’s illustrious alumni, which include evangelist Billy Graham, director Wes Craven, and 9/11 hero Todd Beamer.
Proof positive that Ann is…human?
DOES NOT COMPUTE, DOES NOT COMPUTE.
Read her charming apology here, where she asks for forgiveness twice and admits, “I am mortified by my mistake.” She may not be a robot, but feeling shame over making a very public mistake means she’s most definitely Asian.
Thanks, Shaheen and Dave!
Filed under: Admitting One's Mistakes, Ann Curry, Ann Curry Commencement Address Blunder, Ann Curry Graduation Speech Blunder, Anti-Agin' Asian, Apologies, Even Asians Make Mistakes, Mixed-Race People, Public Apologies, Robots, The Today Show
Tiger Woods apologized today, ushering in a bizarre new era where professional athletes ask forgiveness for cheating on their wives not only from their wives but from the general public.
To recap, Tiger said he:
- has a lot to atone for
- doesn’t get to play by different rules
- brought shame to his family
- wants to live a life of integrity
- will become a better person by returning to Buddhism and by seeking more treatment and therapy
If that fails, Tiger can always tape this picture of his mother Kultida from the press conference (at the 6:00 mark) to a mirror, to scare his ass straight:
Filed under: Apologies, Atonement, Elin Nordegren, Golf, Hardass Asian Mamas, Hardass Asian Moms, Hardass Asian Mothers, Kultida Woods, Public Apologies, Public Shaming, The PGA Tour, Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods Apologizes, Tiger Woods Apology, Tiger Woods Sex Scandals
John Mayer apologized on stage Wednesday night for saying some racially-fucked things in that now infamous Playboy interview–like calling a “hood pass” a “n*gger pass” and saying he has a “white supremacist dick”–and made a special point of saying sorry to his back-up band members, most of whom are black (awkward!). Although he said he was done being “witty” and “clever,” and repeated over and over that he just wants to “play my guitar,” dude couldn’t stop trying to be witty and clever for over three minutes:
As much as we love a real, honest-to-God apology…DUDE SHUT UP ALREADY.
And the colored girls go, “Doo-doo doo-doo-doo doo doo doo-doo-doo-we’re-so-stoked-you-have-a-white-supremacist-dick-doo doo-doo-doo doo doo doo-doo-doo-keep-plugging-chicks-like-Jessica-Simpson-doo-doo doo-doo-doo doo doo doo-that-is-so-fine-with-us-doo-doo doo-doo-doo doo doo doo-your-emo-sensitive-boy-MeMeMe-patter-gives-us-a-rash-doo doo doo-dooooooooo…”
Often when we award the distinctive honor of DISGRASIAN OF THE WEAK, the offender’s biggest problem is that they are shameless about whatever shitty thing they’ve done.
This week, however, we recognize disgrace that has been acknowledged and loaded with a truckful of shame. As you may know, Toyota recently recalled eight auto models with brake pedal sticking problems, after a widely-publicized car crash took the lives of a CHP officer and his family.
Today, Toyota CEO of three months Akio Toyoda stood before the Japan National Press Club to deliver a most ashamed, sprawling, grief-laden public apology.
A little more than three months after assuming his post, the president of Toyota, the world’s biggest automaker, recited a long list of mea culpas to astonished reporters at the Japan National Press Club.
Filed under: Absolute Shame, Apologies, Economic Crisis, Fatal Car Crash CHP Officer, Global Economics, Japan National Press Club, Lexus, Public Apologies, Salvasian, Shame, Toyota, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda, Toyota President Apologizes, Toyota Recall
If Chris Brown actually doesn’t remember whaling on ex-girlfriend Rihanna in February, he should probably try. Because “like, Wow,” “I don’t know what to think” and “it’s crazy to me” may be statements, but they don’t exactly sound apologetic. Hey, maybe that’s just because he’s foggy on the details.
Y’know what does sound apologetic, though? “I’m sorry.”
Occupation: California State Assemblymen
Known for: Co-authoring a historic piece of legislation that resulted on Friday in the state of California recognizing the role Chinese immigrants and Chinese-Americans had in building the Golden State and apologizing for denying them the right to vote, the right to own property, the right to intermarry, the right to testify in court, and the right to attend public schools at one time. While California today is seen as a haven for Asians, where we account for 12% of the total population, it was hard out here for a pimp for about 100 years, from the mid-19th century, when the Chinese arrived for the Gold Rush and were forced to pay racist taxes, to the mid-20th century, when the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 was repealed in 1943. The bill passed by the State Legislature doesn’t seek financial compensation, although Fong and De Leon intend to ask Congress to pass a similar piece of legislation.
All we can say is it’s about damn time, California.
[via LA Times]
Alec Baldwin made a quick quip about Filipino and Russian mail-order brides* last week on Letterman (see video above, at 00:33)–and the immediate fallout in the Philippines was not pretty. In fact, the incident incited a particularly hot reaction from Filipino Senator Ramon Revilla–a former action movie star–who called Baldwin “arrogant” as well as insensitive and ignorant to the country’s laws against mail-order brides.
“Let him try to come here in the Philippines and he’ll see mayhem,” Revilla said, using a local idiom that implies the speaker will personally administer a beating.
Perhaps not the most professional or diplomatic approach, but certainly effective.
In response, Baldwin (who by now must be familiar with the art of public apology), submitted a lengthy “I’m sorry” note to the world via The Huffington Post–noting the outstanding issues of sex trafficking in The Philippines as well as other parts of the world, while directing attention to the non-profit organization Love 146.
And we’re down to support his apology. We’re also really, really, really glad we’re not famous TV stars whose comments are resonant enough to cause international rage.
In other news, Baldwin is going to Hanoi with the N.Y. Philharmonic! [Insert off-color quip here.]
*side note: I’ve actually met one Russian M.O.B., and she was very nice, as well as shockingly well-adjusted.
Japanese Foreign Minister Shoichi Nakagawa resigned today after appearing drunk and slurring his words at a G-7 news conference over the weekend (clip below). The 55 year-old, who was appointed by increasingly-unpopular Prime Minister Taro Aso and is a known drinker, is the same man who told a British newspaper in 2007 that “(w)omen have their proper place: they should be womanly. They have their own abilities and these should be fully exercised, for example in flower arranging, sewing, or cooking. It’s not a matter of good or bad, but we need to accept reality that men and women are genetically different.”
In a statement announcing his resignation, Nakagawa said:
“It is true that I didn’t conduct myself properly, and I feel I must set the record straight. I’m resigning today not because I’m a total boozehound, but because I failed in my state of complete inebriasian to be entertaining and dare I say metaphysical like that little squirt who got his teeth pulled. And for that, I am deeply ashamed.“*
*This is made-up. But in his real statement, Nakagawa blamed his being blotto on cold medicine, which is just as unlikely.
For the “bong hit heard ’round the world,” Michael Phelps was forced to pay some dues: He apologized. His mom apologized. His bong apologized. His contract with Kellogg won’t be renewed, and in lockstep, Subway almost dropped him as well (Thankfully–now I can still order $5 footlongs when necessary). In order to keep Mazda from pulling their funds as well, the man with the golden stroke was even asked to submit this enthusiastic video apology to his “friends in” (read: all of) China:
Call me a derelict, but am I the only one that thinks all of this nonsense is much ado about bong hit? Phelps has been put through the ringer for a photo he did not pose for, because he was smoking weed (like most of you will do this weekend). I don’t care. I don’t want him to apologize! I want him to go home and polish his medals, and post some pictures of his abs to put up on Facebook.
Meanwhile, Chris Brown and Miley Cyrus stay mum about their recent bouts of questionable behavior, our 43rd President will probably never apologize for his crimes against humanity, and Anne Hathaway shall forever owe the world an apology for her insufferable acceptance speech at this year’s Critic’s Choice Awards.
Seems a bit off to me, but maybe I’m just baked.
Filed under: Bong Hits, China, Chris Brown, I Don't Get Anne Hathaway, Kellogg, Marijuana, Mazda, Michael Phelps, Miley Cyrus, Nonsense, Public Apologies, Subway, This is Bullshit, Weed, Weird American Behavior
We’ve been wrong all along. It has quickly become clear that we at DISGRASIAN are the ones that owe you an apology (or a number of them) regarding the “photo of you and your friends,” rather than the other way around. Whoopsie!
Let’s begin: We’re awfully sorry if we called bullshit on the first apology you circulated, addressing the chink-eye photos that have been swirling around the Internet for over a week. We’re sorry if, as evidenced by your second apology, you can’t fucking read.
Like you, we’re sorry “if” we were offended by the photos, if we happen to find mockery of our slitty eyes and chinky buck teef, like, insulting. We’re sorry if we didn’t understand at first that GOD’s plan is for you to be an insensitive, ignorant, good-for-nothing, alienating ingrate. We’re sorry if your face is really naturally goofy (like ours!). We’re sorry if we’re convinced that you are slightly inbred. We’re sorry if it took you half a millisecond to grow “embarassed” and apologize to your fans for the “racy” (eh–we’re not convinced) Annie Leibovitz photos in June 2008′s Vanity Fair, yet you and your bullshit PR team can’t deign to officially deal with these “racist” photos in any kind of decent way. We’re sorry if we believe that Disney is evil, and y’all are proof positive of that.
Moreover, we’re sorry if wrath rains down upon your prett–er, your little head. We’re sorry if one day you happen to find yourself lost in the dark, pummeled by hail, caught up in a horde of locusts, covered in blood and boils, or attacked by frogs and flies. We’re sorry if you end up like Britney–bald, bloated, and crazy. We’re sorry if you find out soon that your model boyfriend doesn’t like girls in “that way.” We’re sorry if your dad has chin pubes. We’re sorry if we still have no idea what you’re famous for.
We’re so sorry, Miley. Anyway, we’ve gotta get back to our busy lives of stuff and stuff! Yayy! =] Here’s a goofy face for the road!!!
Asians hate apologizing. Because it means we have to admit we were wrong. And we hate being wrong as much as we hate apologizing, which is why we excel at stuff to painstakingly avoid it. Our parents also never taught us the distinction between apologizing and flogging ourselves; when we were wrong as kids, we’d have to apologize for the ages. Literally. Like for stuff we did years ago, that we had already apologized for, not to mention the stuff we did five minutes ago. Then we’d have to admit that we fucked up not because, y’know, we occasionally dabbled in bad behavior or that we were, um, children, but because of some deep dark character flaw that we would have to spend the rest of our lives rectifying. Which then sent us into some horrible shame spiral about our “true” selves. It was all very grim, punishing, and Catholic, like Meryl Streep’s character in the movie Doubt, but if it taught us one thing, it was that WE. ALWAYS. HAVE. TO. DO. BETTER.
All this is just to say that we get how hard it is to say you’re sorry. It’s so much easier to, like, shoot an elephant. So when we heard this morning that you’d apologized for giving us the chink-eye, we were pleased, to say the least. Relieved too, because we were exhausted from reading all of the lazy, unexamined responses to the chink-eye picture that told us to “lighten up” or that our eyes “really look like that” or that, apropos of nothing, we’re just mad because our dicks are so teeny. You see, therein lies the problem: when you have a really famous person doing a really racist gesture–and we can’t believe we have to spell this out in the year 2009–it opens the floodgates. It makes it okay to hate. It gives a greenlight to people to air out, inflate, and disseminate their prejudices with impunity.
But then we actually read your “apology”:
“Ive also been told there are some people upset about some pictures taken of me with friends making goofy faces! Well, Im sorry if those people looked at those pics and took them wrong and out of context!
In NO way was I making fun of any ethnicity! I was simply making a goofy face. When did that become newsworthy? It seems someone is trying to make something out of nothing to me. If that would of been anyone else, it would of been overlooked! I definitely feel like the press is trying to make me out as the new ‘BAD GIRL’!”
I feel like now that Britney is back on top of her game again, they need someone to pick on! Lucky me! haha Anyway, I just wanted to let you guys know what is on my heart. You guys know me and have been by my side every step of the way!
You guys know my heart and know the most important things to me are my friends, family, fans, and GOD! In NO WAY do I want to disappoint any of you! But, when I have made mistakes in the past, I feel like Ive owned up to them and apologized.
Anyway, I really wish everyone would stop focusing on my personal life and get back to focusing on what I love! Music and Acting! Hopefully, I will be touring again this fall! Yayy! =] It will be a nice change to be back out on the road again! xoxo Blessings.. Miley =)”
Never begin an apology with “I’m sorry IF.” That makes it a conditional and half-assed. That’s like saying, “I’m sorry if I offended you. You think I offended you, but I don’t, and I refuse to think about this further because I’m right and you’re wrong. Who wants ice cream?” If you apologize, you have to own it.
Also, never lie in an apology. “I was simply making a goofy face.” No, you weren’t. You were giving us the chink-eye, an internationally-recognized symbol of unwelcome, like the reverse pineapple. The guy who’s making a peace sign and covering his mouth behind your hirsute boyfriend knows it. And your token Asian friend, who’s the only person not giving us the chink-eye because, deep down, underneath the hair product and the “I’m-just-happy-to-be-here” attitude, he understands on an inchoate level that you’re really laughing at him, and not with him…he knows it, too.
Furthermore, don’t leave things unsaid in an apology. If you’re going to blame the context, you’re obliged to provide the context. But in what context is giving the chink-eye acceptable? Are you going to feign like the Spanish Basketball Team and try to pass it off as a “loving” gesture? Were you and your friends doing an impromptu staging of Miss Saigon (we’ll admit we love that musical for the helicopter rescue)? Or were you just high, as a lot of people are saying you were? Marijuana is always a lousy excuse for bad behavior. And don’t hide behind the word “context.” Context doesn’t make it right.
How do we know so much about apologizing, when we’re so loath to do it? Well, we’ve had a lot of practice. And also, we’re Asian, and, like we said before, we excel at things because we don’t like to fuck up, make mistakes, and get sent down a horrible shame spiral. If you really want to be like us, Miley, get your fingers out of your eyes, and start doing the same.
love means never having to say you’re sorry in a half-assed way,