June 27, 2013
For starters, let’s just start off by expressing our hesitation to do topics that don’t paint Korea in the greatest light. This is why we spend far too long in our videos giving multiple disclaimers, rather than just freely talking about what’s on our mind. Yes, we know that a lot of you Nasties here on the blog are really cool people who really understand us and what we’re saying, and won’t think that we’re vile scumbags for making this video, and so you’re not as likely going to get offended. But there are also new viewers of our videos, viewers who won’t know the kind of people we are, and who will possibly take things out of context. Videos on sensitive topics like this have more shareability than, say, videos about how we lost weight, you know? It’s these new viewers need disclaimers, not you guise. Correction: new viewers and Tumblr, even though we know that there are some corners of Tumblr that can’t be salvaged, regardless of whether we put in 1 disclaimer or 100. We’re overflowing with white privilege so we need to get social justice policed. Got it. Let the reblogging begin!
Now that our disclaimer on disclaimers is out of the way, let’s just say how uncomfortable we were with this topic, frankly because we’re worried that people might fear coming to Korea because they think everyone will perceive them in one of the ways we discussed in the video, which is totally unfair to say. No matter what country you go to, there will always be racism and stereotypes. Every country has its own cocktail of beliefs. No one is safe from being misperceived.
That shouldn’t be a deterrent from you visiting other countries, though. Just like how it’s not fair to say that everyone acts a specific way, it’s also not fair to think that everyone in a country thinks that everyone from another country act a specific way. We’ve met loads of really cool people who don’t share these beliefs, loads of cool people who we’ve made lasting friendships with, and it’d be a shame if fear of the bigotry of a few soured the chance for you to experience the awesomeness of the many, you know?
Some of the stereotypes we discussed in this video we didn’t actually hear about until we started researching the topic and asking our friends, so it’s not even like these stereotypes are universal. What one friend suggests another has never heard of. The ones that affect us, though, we could talk about more comfortably, like the Russian Saram solicitation and the perception of being unqualified teachers and sexual deviants. I remember back when we were still teaching and making videos, we’d read comments about us on Korean sites about being unqualified to teach, and “losers” that couldn’t find jobs in Canada. The idea of foreign teachers being “losers” is one that we read a lot, not only about ourselves but also about a lot of other teachers. That seems to be a common phrase when describing foreign teachers. We’d respond like “Unqualified to teach? Losers? I got my Bachelors of Education! I’m qualified to teach!” I didn’t really know how to respond to being a loser, though. What can you say to that? “I’m not a loser! You are! BOOYA!” And then high-five myself and leave. That taught em. That taught em real good…
Also, there were a few stereotypes that we couldn’t really discuss to any greater depth apart from just basically listing them, like the perceptions of people from Malaysia, the Philippines, and China. These are stereotypes that we haven’t actually experienced, nor do we have friends here who experienced them. We were just told about them. If anyone wants to add to these – in a civil way, of course – please do. As for what our black friends have experienced, we can only relay that to you from what they’ve told us, and what we mentioned in this video was corroborated by a few different people we know.
Side note: I just remembered this old video we did, which is relevant: Russian Saram?
I’m sure that there are a lot more stereotypes that we didn’t mention. Don’t even get us started on perceptions of Japan and Japanese people. Whoa. Now there’s a sensitive topic that demands the utmost caution in wording. I’m sure some people are going to ask about prostitution in Korea now after Se7en got caught at a Rub&Tug: another topic that’ll be difficult to handle without offending people. Anyhoodledoodlepoodle, if you don’t mind, we’re gonna get our shotguns and put our backs against the wall for the next few days. Soo Zee will get back to translating the angry Korean comments we’ll get on other sites. Spudgy will guard the door. Teeeeeeaaaaammmmm BREAK!