TIna Fey is primarily knows as the creator of TV show “30 Rock” and movie “Mean Girls”, her memoir “Bossypants” and her lampooning of a conservative woman on SNL.
In June of 2020, Tina Fey voluntarily pulled 4 episodes of her TV show “30 Rock” from Netflix. At least one of these shows highlighted a character in blackface. She apologized for her insensitive behavior towards black people. “30 Rock” ran from 2006 to 2013.
Apparently, there are also episodes of “30 Rock” that contained stereotypes of Asians. To my knowledge, these shows have also been removed. If they were removed it was to much less fanfare because to my knowledge, she has never issued a statement regarding her treatment of Asians and subsequent stereotypes. Alas, as I have never watched “30 Rock” I have no personal knowledge of what any episode contained.
In Fey’s 2004 movie “Mean Girls”, Fey once again employed the use of Asian stereotypes. “Mean GIrls” continues to be shown on Network TV as well as streaming services. I have seen this movie and I did enjoy it. The movie is roughly based on the book “Queen Bees and Wannabees”.
When I originally watched the movie, I thought Fey was on the side of the plucky young women who had been plagued by the “mean girls”. In hindsight, I’m not so sure which side she is actually on.
As this show and it’s stereotypes are still available, perhaps “Mean Girls” should come with a disclaimer (you know, like The Muppets and The Aristocats have)
“Mean Girls” was created in 2004. At this time, we were not as culturally as sensitive to the use of Asian stereotypes as we are today. Sorry. We just didn’t know any better back then.
You know…cause it was in the 21st Century….
BTW- Fey cohosted The Golden Globes on February 28, 2021.
When NYC Mayor DeBlasio ran for reelection, one of his campaign promises was to make NYC Specialized High Schools (entrance to these High Schools is based on a certain score on the SHSAT) more accessible to minorities and persons of color. This is a wonderful sentiment. The problem is, New York Cities specialized high schools are already predominantly minority/POC. They are mainly Asian.
In 2020, the Oregon DOE instructed teachers to use the manual “A Pathway to Equitable Math Instruction”. This is supposed to make math education better for all. The booklet talks about whites and blacks and Latinx. The booklet fails to mention Asians at all. There is a label “multilingual” but are we still marginalizing an entire race of immigrants by not even giving them a name?
So as you read the above, did any of you think-
Well, Asians don’t need _________ because Asians are insert Asian stereotype here
See how easy it is to stereotype? Even in the 21st century…
Racism might not be the end of us.
That’s another story.