Amasian! New York Knicks Jeremy Lin teaches this mom a lesson

Amasian! New York Knicks Jeremy Lin teaches this mom a lesson

Let’s get the public’s outcry for using the made up word ‘Amasian’ by the New York Post out of the way.  Twitter is going crazy with:  “It’s a clear racial slur”, “If he were American, would you write that?” (by the way he is American and of Taiwanese descent) “That headline is so offensive”.

Give me a break.  The Post combined the word Amazing and Asian.  Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks is both.  So not offensive.  He launched a 3-pointer in a tie game in Toronto Tuesday night at the last second, which sparked the Post to use that headline which seems to be making more news than Lin himself.  We need to get over the creative headline and get to the real story.

Even if you are not a sports fan, you need to know this story.  And you REALLY need to know this story if you are a parent.

A condensed version of where he came from:  Jeremy Lin was a high school basketball star in Palo Alto California.  Strangely enough, he was not recruited after his senior year, but Lin still loved the game and sent his resume with DVD highlights to all the ivy league schools, Cal, Stanford, UCLA and Pac 10 schools.  A few schools offered him a walk on position, but it was Harvard that took the time to evaluate his game and offer him a position (Ivy League schools don’t offer athletic scholarships.)

Even though he had a great college basketball career, he went undrafted in the 2010 NBA draft.  On July 21st, of that same year, Lin signed a contract with the Golden State Warriors.  He had a bit of a cult following, but his success never really took off.  He then had a short stint with the Houston Rockets. He was basically cut by both teams.  On December 27th, the New York Knicks claimed Lin solely as a backup.  He was living on his brother’s couch, but never gave up.  On February 4th of this year, Lin’s life would change forever.  He was put in the game against the Nets because the night before, the Knicks blew a 4th quarter lead over the Celtics.  He scored 25 points against the Nets.  The next game he played against the Jazz and had 28 points.  On the 10th he had 38 points, leading the Knicks to a win over the Lakers.  Which led us up to last night’s amazing 3-point shot and all the great headlines.

The lessons in the story are obvious.  But this is why it struck a chord for me.  My kids are in many different activities with varying results.  I have one daughter who loves a sport, and has been doing it for a number of years.  I’ve seen her struggle to master a skill and felt her pain as her friends moved up in levels while she’s remained where they all started.  After all these years, I’ve had the following conversations with her multiple times, “Maybe we should consider other activities.  Do you like art, other sports, music, etc.?”  The answer is always the same.  “I love this sport, and I’m going to continue.  It’s going to happen mom.”

Yes, Jeremy Lin is a great example for kids to use when obstacles seem insurmountable, but Lin is an even better example for parents.  Watching my daughter feel the pain of always being the one having to congratulate the athlete next to her on their success, was really hard.  I took on that pain and was the one getting ready to cut and run.  She wanted to persevere, and I was the one saying, we might want to throw in the towel.  What is wrong with me?  Did I need her to feel success so badly that I forgot about the journey?  She is wise beyond her years, and has a strength that outdoes mine any day of the week.  Thank you Jeremy Lin for reminding me that hard work, perseverance and dedication can pay off.  My daughter may never achieve the notoriety of Lim, but it doesn’t matter.  She shares his same characteristics, so she’s winning already.

Oh, and we’re part Polish.  When she becomes incredibly famous, I will not be offended by the headline: Polishtively Perfect


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  • Jeremy Lin, along with Tim Tebow, are two professional athletes I wouldn't mind my girlfriend cheating on me with. Indeed, I may encourage her to do so.

  • In reply to gwill:

    Hoping for some tickets?

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    We don't mention that the average American is white in situations like this. A headline involving Steve Nash with his race, or any white athlete wouldn't happen. Definitely wouldn't be okay for African Americans

    A headline like this minimizes him to being just an Asian and less importantly, an American human being. The headline is outrageous and can't be defended

  • Hah, desperate for some controversial exposure? Such is white privilege, never having to worry about racial insults. Your colorblind racist attitude marginalizes victims of racism. It's a big deal because your daughter will never be recognized as Polish-American outside a Polish centered feature. Minorities will never, ever be fully American in the eyes of white America. Minorities are relegated foreigners in their home country. You missed the part in your article where Lin faced racial insults at many of his games throughout high school and college. These headlines are insulting because it minimizes what it means to be "Asian-American", which is the isolation from mainstream America, racial ignorance and stereotypes that prevented Lin from being recruited, and the fact that every day we are asked, Hey what are you? Like I'm some kind of dog. No, I'm American. "No you're n...You know what I mean, what kind of Asian?" The biggest offense is that there will never, ever be a title, "Polishtively Perfect," because race is irrelevant when describing white people. Mainstream America basically states that all Americans are white, if they're not, they're African-American, Asian-American, xxx-American. That is the biggest insult.

  • In reply to gwhat:

    Thanks for your feedback. I really appreciate it. I think I look at it much differently from you. I don't think we should all just be AMERICAN. We are different. I have a very large percentage of Native American in me, and I celebrate the difference. I wish I looked more like my Indian ancestors than my Polish ones.
    If I were Asian, I'd be so proud and would want people to recognize that I have a little bit of different DNA than the majority. I think some of the things that the ESPN commentators say are ridiculous and racist, but when we're talking about all the great things Lin is accomplishing, I'm not sure why it's terrible to bring up his heritage.
    We're all different and even if we all live in the States, culturally we probably all live very different lives. I think it would be wrong to cookie cut everyone and just say we're American. Just seems rather boring to me.

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