For those not au fait with APA blogosphere lingo, “IR disparity” refers to the Asian American heterosexual male’s gripe with Asian American heterosexual females dating and marrying “out,” as in getting it on with non-Asians. Yes, it’s a gripe, a petulant, nagging, neverending whine whine “why don’t you love me?” whine, albeit a legitimate, validated gripe. Every APA blogsite (that counts) has at some point addressed the IR disparity or at least was coerced into addressing it by troll commenters. The IR disparity has a long history of— People, stop chuckling and rolling your eyes here. This issue is as important as civil rights. And in any case I’ve got a solution. A solid one.
First, a little context for the gripe. There’s this mysterious Tyra Banks statistic, which I cannot find the source of, but if Tyra Banks says it is so, then it must be so, that more than 75% of the interracial dating scene is between Asian females and white males. Last year, the Pew Research Center came out with a report titled “Marrying Out” that found Asians to marry out at the highest frequency among all races, with 40% of the Asians marrying out being female (and only 20% of Asian males marrying out). An older study, “What Makes You Click? Mate Preferences and Matching Outcomes in Online Dating” suggests there are attribute trade-offs in mate preferences, specifically in income to ethnicity, and found that an Asian male who wants a white woman needs to make $247,000 more than a white man who wants to get that same white woman. The authors of the study write that these results “should not be taken fully literally,” but a quick keyword search online pulls up tons of IR debates where people must have missed that part and therefore cited the $247,000 stat quite literally. And that’s just a few of the plethora of scientific and pseudoscientific studies suggesting that the IR disparity is a legitimate, validated gripe.
So what do we do about this, this IR disparity? Well folks, what has America always done to counter the effects of discrimination, benefit an underrepresented group, and fix a disparate impact? Affirmative action, baby!
I’m not talking equal opportunity here: I’m talking straight up quotas and preferential treatment. I propose that all straight unmarried women (and since this is 8A, I’m specifically directing the proposition at women of Asian-descent everywhere, hapas this includes you too) agree to a 50% quota, hereinafter the Quota. 50% of all the men you date should be Asian. That’s it. In fact, make a list of your dating history right now. If half of them aren’t yellow or some warm happy tone of brown, you’ve got a lot of catching up work to do. In fact, if you are single right now, make it a point for your next romantic encounter to be with an Asian dude.
Sites such as 8A and more recently BigWowo.com, among others have posted frequently about the IR disparity, with each post inciting quite the wrath from what at least appears on the surface to be APA males, though with the blogosphere, one never really knows. The most recent one, here, has brought out some really intriguing though unoriginal characters: boys crying, “you girls don’t think we’re good enough; you don’t love your own kind” and the girls saying back, “uh… you’re not good enough; and yeah well you don’t really love us either; plus there’s these two Asian guys at my school who are losers, so all Asian guys must be losers. ”
That post and the pulp of a dead horse that APAs have beat this issue into is what got me thinking about the efficacy of a Quota. The IR disparity has become our community’s very own Godwin’s Law (mainstream bloggers end up talking about the Nazis; APA bloggers end up talking about the IR disparity), as proven by discussion sites like ModelMinority.com’s “The Forum,” Fighting44s.com, YellowWorld.org, and the ultimate scary site, Chinadaily BBS… not going to tell you what I think BBS really stands for…
There’s no deprivation of choice here, nothing like arranged marriage. No one is telling you which Asian man to date; only that half of the men you date in your lifetime should be Asian, any Asian you want. And there are so many of them to choose from! Asia, I hear, is a big, big country. . . .
Even if there aren’t that many Asian males walking about the town you live in, once we get this demand going, Asian male mail order sites and Asian male “me love you long time” pop culture references will crop up for sure and soon enough we’ll be seeing creepy AdSense ads promoting the Asian male fetish all over 8A. Hollywood will ride the trendiness of the phenomenon and produce films featuring Asian men as the romantic partner of choice…or at least 50% of them will, and that’s a percentage I can live with. Marie Claire will run an article titled “The New Dream Husbands: Asian Men.” [Compare: Marie Claire‘s 2009 article, “The New Trophy Wives: Asian Women.”] And, boys, I know this is exactly what you’ve wanted. All the complaining of exoticism from Asian feminist activists… man, what do we know, we’ve actually had it good.
With a strict, national implementation of the Quota, the Asian male gripe will cease to exist. APA blogsites will finally focus on issues like the continuing hate crimes targeting Asian Americans; the backhanded model minority myth; greater APA political representation at all levels, city, state, and national; workplace discrimination and the glass ceiling that hinders Asian American professionals from breaking into executive positions; seating the first APA Supreme Court Justice; or poverty among urban Asians. Because I understand that none of these issues really matter until we can get the IR disparity squared away.
So ladies. Have you met your Quota lately?
(Image credit: TheOatmeal)