People are naturally going to unfairly stereotype certain groups.
One would imagine Asian-Americans are probably tired of hearing jokes about how good they are at math, or how they’re going to be doctors someday.
Stereotypes like these are common, but one basketball player is expanding all of them, and making people think twice before they use a stereotype nowadays.
It’s Linsanity, Lincredible, but mostly, it’s really important.
Jeremy Lin, an Asian-American point guard for the New York Knicks, has taken the sports world by surprise with his sudden leap to prominence. Despite potentially saving his team’s season, he has had a much larger impact than that.
Over at Hardwood Paroxysm, an NBA themed blog, Danny Chau, an Asian-American, wrote a fantastic article about how he sees Lin. Chau said he was “proud” of how Lin “spins the narrative of the typical Asian over-achiever.”
Not only does Lin highlight certain false stereotypes regarding the Asian-American community, he also highlights the fact that despite the efforts of Jackie Robinson, sports are not yet completely tolerant.
ESPN recently had to fire a writer who published a racist headline on the company’s website when referring to Lin. The company released a statement apologizing to Lin, saying the comments were “offensive and inappropriate.”
Pierce Do, an Asian-American sophomore at Leesville, said, “He’s good. I think it’s good because a lot of people can relate to his underdog story.”
The racism didn’t seem to bother him, as he said “yeah, as long as it’s in good fun, not mean-spirited.”
Do, like Chau, agreed that it was good to see someone break the stereotype.
“Yeah, it shows with hard work that you can do anything,” he continued and said Lin showed “you can always do what you’re passionate about.”
His favorite Lin moment?
“My favorite moment was the spin move on Derek Fisher.”
Do has been a fan of Lin for a while, mentioning that it was the banner on his Facebook timeline.
Lin has not only impacted the Asian-American community, but other groups of people as well.
Dave Nyamu, sophomore, said, “I think he brings something because he is Taiwanese.”
He admitted to falling into stereotyping Lin. “He has changed my view a lot, because even though you had Yao (Ming) in the league a few years ago. He was just tall and that’s why people thought he was good.”
He also commented on the basketball aspect of Lin. “He needs to cut down on the turnovers.”
His favorite Lin moment? “Definitely the buzzer-beater in Toronto.”
Whether or not Jeremy Lin is heading to a Finals, or even the playoffs, his story is more important than basketball.