People seem able to hold two objects in their hands, but not two thoughts in their heads.
1. Asian Americans were lynched, run out of town, murdered, deported, and put into concentration camps. Asian Americans suffered terrible violence and oppression.
2. Asian Americans now suffer lesser oppression than many other POC, and are held up as a “model minority” as a tool to show why all the other POC are terrible people, and often recruited to engage in perpetuating the oppression.
#1 seems to always be the thing people want to erase. It’s important to erase it, because it invalidates the sales job that #2 provides. See, when there is less oppression, people succeed more. (which, points out all too well, when you see other POC as collectives failing, then you have to go, “Oh, look, oppression, and where does it come from?”)
That said, erasing the past is part of what makes it so easy for many Asian Americans to hop on the anti-blackness bandwagon - when you forget that you, too, were a lynching target, then all the “Negroes LOL!” hate shit seems like it puts you above them.
That is, of course, until someone decides you overstep your bounds and you realize, just cause they let you in the house, don’t mean they stopped considering you a slave…
So, this is how I look at it - when I see people don’t know about our history - I look at us for not studying it, for not acknowledging it (and calling out white power structures who inflicted it upon us), I look to the white people who erase that history every day, who minimalize it, who try to slap me on the back and tell me, or us collectively, we’re not “like those people over there”, and I look to the education system that makes that all happen.
You know who I look to way last at the end of that line? The fellow POC who may be ignorant, but it’s not their fault between white erasure, and the all-too-often Asian American complicity in making it seem like we’ve always been the best of friends and not that they’ve gone hard on us and seem to never care when we end up dead.
I point to racism as a society wide version of an abusive family. You have the abuser, and a whole lot of the family trying to side with the abuser so they, too, don’t get hit. And the one person in the family everyone blames, because no one is willing to stand up and acknowledge who the true source of suffering is.
There’s a whole lot of ways POC reinforce shit on each other, but as far as I’m concerned White Supremacy is the source and the head, and that will always get my first attention.