Everyone has something to say. Everyone has an opinion. And we should respect all opinions and express all opinions respectfully because we’re all people.
Respecting the right to an opinion is the message Opinionated Man is trying to get out there through Project O, a blogging project collating responses to a series of questions on this topic throughout this month. It is a global project dedicated to exploring how various factors such as location, nationality, sex, age and cultural background have the potential to affect the formation of opinions.
Protestors sitting on the road and voicing their opinions at Swanston St/Bourke St. Photo: Mabel Kwong
Below is my submission (questions edited for brevity reasons) for Project O. It was first posted here. Check out the other submissions here – all very different from mine but well worth the read.
Asian girl and Caucasian guy. Hand in hand walking down the street. It’s a sight that’s becoming more and more common in public these days.
Sometimes these are scenes of true love. Sometimes these two people of different heritage are attracted to each other purely because of the “exotic cultural difference aura” hanging in the air between them.
Love is complex. Inter-racial love is perhaps even more complex. Photo: Mabel Kwong
Just how do both these kinds of Asian-girl-white-guy relationships work?
I was recently invited to give a talk at Kurunjang Secondary College on what it means to be “different”, an Asian Australian living in a predominantly white Australia.
As I gingerly stumbled to the front of the Year 12 class on a crisp winter morning, I noticed about twenty odd Caucasian and Asian students staring back at me from behind their desks. Some of them had Melbourne lawyer/writer Alice Pung’s Growing Up Asian In Australia in front of them, one of the texts they were studying for their upcoming final high school English exams.
Me talking to a Year 12 class at Kurunjang Secondary College. Such bright students who know a lot about multiculturalism. Photo: Emma
The teacher shook my hand and I introduced myself to the class. I launched into a story about how as a kid living in the eastern suburbs, I rarely felt part of a group; all my Caucasian classmates refused to share their Shapes with me during lunch and my mum refused to buy these biscuits for me as I, according to her, was supposed to “eat Asian food”.