“No, where are you from originally?”
Vu Tran

Pfff…. I disagree wholeheartedly. It’s all about intent. If someone is asking you questions as these (or about food or whatever) just out of curiosity it may be tiring to you but it is NOT casual racism.

That is way too easy. If I come across someone from eastern Europe I’d like to know where from. It’s called genuine interest.

If someone asks me if there’s some Indo blood in me 99% of the time it’s because people are just interested. It’s got nothing to do with microagressions. Come off it, already!

Besides: I love telling people exactly what I’m made up from and out of.

Even the Dutch don’t really understand what the difference is between all the Asian varieties. They don’t even remember the difference between someone from Indonesia and an Indo who is basically a Dutch person (ex-colonial) with mixed blood. I’m always happy to tell them. Keeps them on their toes, educates them on their own history and let’s me own my identity and agency.

What is tiring to me are all these people who experience racism where none was intended. It smacks of wanting to be a victim.

You’ll know when someone is being racist or “othering” you. It is and always will be about intent.

Show your support

Clapping shows how much you appreciated Patrick Jongenburger-Van’s story.