In response to the article “Being Asian in Great Neck,” first off, I want to say that I’m also a student at Great Neck South. I believe there is some truth to what you have to say about Asians and “whites” (although, personally, saying “white” sounds very derogatory especially since the word “white” is lowercase and “Asian” is capitalized) [Editor’s note: this follows Merriam-Webster’s style], but I don’t believe this is “generally the truth” as you put it. I have read this article quite a few times, and I’m very unsettled with how you portray white and Asian life in Great Neck. I think this article is very divisive.
I’m a Caucasian at Great Neck South, and I play an instrument, study a lot and don’t party. I also maintain an A+ GPA in all honors classes. Does this make me Asian or white? I would like to believe race is not indicative of these attributes. I also know several people in Great Neck, besides myself, who do not fit these stereotypes.
I believe that you did not have malicious intentions when writing this article, but from my perspective, there is a very condescending tone towards whites, as if our values that you outline—partying and not studying enough—are inferior to the values of Asians that you outline—studying diligently, not partying and playing an instrument.
The values that you depict are not representative of Asians and whites. There are so many exceptions to the stereotypes that you illustrate. In addition, you mention that there are “distinct lines” between the races at Great Neck South. I disagree.
Later, you contradict your statement by saying how “we have assimilated.” It appears as though you believe, as well as many others, that this assimilation is not a good thing because now Asians are resorting to the base values of whites—that of partying and not working hard enough. As a result, when you concluded your article, I was confused. What is your point/message?
I think this article can be misinterpreted because a distinct point is not made clear. Forgive me if I have misinterpreted what you were saying, but I want to highlight the discrepancies. I think this article should have had a very different focus—one of acceptance. Let’s embrace diversity in Great Neck.
—Great Neck South Student