Don’t think racism is an issue these days? Just go on Instagram (and other social media).

For those that are naive enough to believe that we live in a post-racial society and racism is nothing to be concerned about anymore, I’d like to suggest you log onto Instagram, Twitter, and the various other social media outlets.

As is the case in these advanced technological times, word quickly spread about an Instagram account called “asiansareugly” created by two young girls by the names of  “Zoe” and “Cassie”. I came across the Instagram account via a Tumblr post by salemdylann  (attached photos are from her blog). I made my way to the Instagram page and was greeted with dozens of photos of Asians captioned with vulgar and racist words. It seems these young girls trolled the Instagram world for photos uploaded by Asians and reposted them with what they deemed to be appropriate and funny comments.

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As of this afternoon, the “asiansareugly” Instagram page can no longer be found. Either the people at Instagram took down the account or the young girls themselves deleted it. It’s just one very small victory, if you even want to count it as that. Those young girls no longer have Instagram as a platform to display their hate, but they still have hate in them. Furthermore, their Instagram account was just one small percentage of the world wide web dedicated to racism. What about the other Instagram accounts, Twitter accounts, Facebook pages and blogs with similar themes?

Growing up in the village of Dunning on Chicago’s west side as a Filipina American, I heard my fair share of racist remarks. I was the only Asian person in my entire grade school class of Polish and Italian Americans. Most of my classmates didn’t have a problem with me or my being Asian, but there were a couple people who loved to yell “Chink!” and “Go back to China!” at me.

It’s sad knowing that young people are still growing up hating others just because of their ethnic background. These days, hate can be shared instantaneously via social media outlets. I don’t believe we’ll ever live in a world where racism is not an issue. That would be a perfect world and we all know that we are so far from that. Racism and hatred for others will only continue so long as parents are raising their children in that manner. What we can all do, at the very least, is acknowledge this and not turn a blind eye; we can’t lie to ourselves and say that it is not a problem.

Hatred is a direct result of ignorance so we must continue to educate those that are uninformed. A world where people can peacefully and respectfully discuss differences in race, religion, sexual orientation, and political views is about as close to a perfect world as we can get.

Email: realtalkdebate2012@gmail.com

Twitter: @_Camelia & @talkrealdebate

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UPDATE: As of 2:30PM CST, Zoe and Cassie have created “asiansareugly2” on Instagram with the description “Asians Are Ugly Backup Heyyy its Zoe and Cassie again backup account for @asiansareugly because all Asians are fucking ugly!!”

Let’s see how long until this account is taken down by Instagram too.

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UPDATE: As of 4:00PM CST, “asiansareugly2” and “asiansareugly4” were taken down. It seems that Zoe and Cassie inspired other Instagram users to create accounts such as “asiansareugly3” and “asiansareugly10” so that they are unable to create “backup” accounts to spread their hate. Hooray for the intelligent and non racist youths of America!

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16 responses to “Don’t think racism is an issue these days? Just go on Instagram (and other social media).”

  1. Just B Healthy & Fit says :

    Thx for the awareness on this subject – good post – very informative. It’s sad this still occurs in a country of a mixture of people. Folks fear what they don’t know & fear brings ignorance.

  2. JF Owen says :

    Racism isn’t gone and unfortunately it probably never will be. Humans are pack animals and like other pack species, if an individual isn’t part of the pack he or she is often perceived as an outsider at best and an enemy at worst. As in this case, youth who are trying to cement their place in the pecking order are often the worst offenders. That’s why high schools are full of cliques and gangs.

    Our ability to reason has made that type of ostracization less prevalent over time and driven the creation of laws and social pressures to make overt racism unacceptable. But in many cases that civility and acceptance is a thin veneer. The anonymity of the internet can cause that veneer to crack and let the stink seep to the surface.

    That’s not an excuse to stop trying to improve the situation; it’s just a recognition that the process will take a long time and may never be completely finished.

    Western cultures don’t have an exclusive on this. It only takes a short while being a “gaijin” in Japan to understand that the concept of racism is universal in human cultures.

    • cameliarodriguez says :

      Thank you for your insightful comment. I appreciate you continuing the discussion!

    • Anonymous says :

      About the only thing that’ll finally stop racism is the day you can buy skin lightening and skin darkening pills over the counter. In that case “race” becomes a matter of fashion, not unchanging identity. Until this disrupting technology exists, sadly, racism will continue until all people are mixed race. Race as fashion would accelerate race mixing in terms of DNA.

  3. ronarruejo says :

    I agree that racism is about ignorance, but I don’t necessarily think that it’s a direct or only result of it. We all have some forms of bias against or for groups, whether defined or undefined or by other type of dis-aggregation method. We must make sure, though, that we recognize the differences that we see in each other and appreciate, rather than hate, them.

  4. Don't assume figure out says :

    FYI those two kids were actually framed. Before it was a different account but then someone hacked it and deleted all of the old photos and put the racist ones.

    • cameliarodriguez says :

      I did notice many people commenting on photos posted by the follow-up accounts that two young girls’ accounts were hacked into, but at the time of my post I was just going off what I was seeing. I wasn’t assuming or making anything up. In the description of the “asiansareugly” account it said the creators were “Zoe and Cassie”.

  5. The Maykazine says :

    Hi there, I’m one of the people who directly emailed a friend at Instagram to take the accounts down (after reporting them officially, of course). The whole situation is a poignant reminder for anyone looking for a fluffy world of post-race coexistence.

    Regardless of whether these girls were framed as Don’t Assume proposes, the existence of any troll was ridiculous and needed to be nailed down. There’s still some speculation about the actual girls, but whether or not they ripped off other Instagrammers’ photos (Impersonation is a whole other issue for Instagram.) for their occasional staged selfie shots is beside the point.

    At any rate, let’s just pledge to raise better kids.

  6. Onita says :

    I don’t know what the deal is, but this is just sad and I am so disgusted.

  7. Angel Nguyen says :

    My younger sister told me about this account because she has an Instagram account and I don’t have one. But after just seeing a few of the posts on there, I chose to stop and ignore the rest. Being an Asian American, I’ve experienced instances where ignorance reigned over acceptance and it’s gotten to the point where I can’t even bother to acknowledge the people who are doing it.

    Whether it was those two girls or not, the fact that the page was targeting and insulting Asians to such a high degree should not be acceptable in a country that claims itself as “the melting pot” but leaves us out of campaigns, ads, or anything else widespread, which only further points to ignorance of the issue.

    While I do agree that racism is present everywhere in every culture at all points in the day, I say that racism should be something that you keep to yourself. It does no one any good and it not only makes you look like the smaller person but also your parents and peers.

    • cameliarodriguez says :

      Thank you for your comment!

      It really is upsetting that in America people of color are made to feel like outsiders and inferior to white Americans. This country is the way it is because of the fact that people immigrated here from every part of the world. And you are absolutely right that even in 2013 Asian American faces are still not greatly represented in the media. It’s so disappointing.

  8. Belle says :

    Unfortunately, they have since started a new instagram account called @asiansarestillugly

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