By Louis Chan, AsAmNews National Correspondent
Amazon’s public relations department has so far failed to respond to a request from AsAmNews to ban the use of the racial slur “Chinaman” on its platform.
Since publishing the article, readers have contacted AsAmNews with several other examples of the use of the slur or offensive images associated with the Fu Man Chu stereotype.
The ad from Bristol Novelties that first came to AsAmNews’ attention sold a Chinaman hat with pigtail.
Since then another ad from Bristol Novelties has been brought to our attention. This one promotes a “Chinaman Mustache.”
A third ad, selling a Chinese man pigtail hat, reinforces the Fu ManChu stereotype, a sinister, evil character portraying Asian Americans as a menace to society. This product, sold by Forum Novelties, also encourages non-Asians to caricature Asian American in an unflattering manner.
AsAmNews has launched a change.org petition directed at Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. If you support this petition please sign and share on all social media platforms.
The petition reads:
In this day and age, no people should have to be subjected to racial slurs and demeaning and dehumanizing stereotypes. Yet the biggest online giant in the nation, Amazon, does it without blinking an eye.
Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon and owner of the Washington Post, can single-handedly end this practice and we demand that he do so immediately.
Please require your sellers to remove racial slurs such as Chinaman and images which reinforce the racist stereotypes of Asian Americans as sinister, evil and a menace to society. If these sellers do not cooperate, we ask that you ban them from the Amazon platform.
This ad from Bristol Novelty uses the racist slur “Chinaman” in its headline to sell a Chinese beanie.
Another ad from the same company does it again to sell a “Chinaman Tash.”
The derogatory term “Chinaman” has been used derisively to refer to people from China and other East Asian countries and has historically been used in a negative context, unlike Englishman or Irishman.
The “Chinaman Tash” also props up the offensive Fu Man Chu stereotype, as does a similar product from Forum Novelties. The fictionalized Hollywood character demonizes Asians and, at one time, was even derided by the U.S. State Department, which considered China an ally during WWII.
Bezos would not allow his Washington Post to refer to Asians as Chinaman, we ask that he do the same on Amazon. We also do not believe these offensive images would be published in the Post without historical context. Again, we ask Bezos to ban such images from Amazon.
Failure to do so would be a slap in the face to Amazon’s Asian American customers and all those who believe all people should be treated with respect.
You can sign the petition here.
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