On March 11, Alexandra Wallace, a White female UCLA student, posted a slanderous rant about Asian-Americans on YouTube. Since then, there has been national attention, internet buzz, and passionate responses. In the midst of that, I have been reflecting on what this has meant to me individually, as well as the implications of this for our campus community.
I’ve written a song that I’m calling “a Black man’s response to the (UCLA) Asian-American community.” Please let me know your thoughts on the song, the situation, the video, and what you think an appropriate response should look like.
Let there be Shalom at UCLA.
It only takes a spark to make a fire burn
And we’ve done quiet ignorance: what have we learned?
I know you don’t think all of this is a big deal
But I think we’ve become more plastic and less real
We live with masks of rage and indifference
We can’t be face to face, we’re so afraid
But we need another way, this blindness doesn’t work
What we thought would save us all has now become our curse
We need to be less plastic, and become more real
Right now, the anger burns in every part of you
And you’ve been told to shut your mouth and let it stew
But will you use your voice to cry, to rise, to say,
That you choose to speak, your silent suffering ends today!
We choose suffering, we choose to stay
Or everything will remain the same
We can do what we’ve always done
Or we can choose a new vision
We have to be less plastic and become more real
released March 25, 2011
cover photography by Joshua Lee
all rights reserved