Please help us in donating and championing ProAsian representation in the West by supporting Kat Loves LA Season 2, created by Asians, featuring AMAF, and bringing to light many storylines that we’ve experienced ourselves in the West:
When I first wrote Kat Loves LA in December 2016, I wanted to tell a romantic story with two Asian American leads because that’s something I had never seen growing up.
Over the years I started noticing more Asian American women on the screen, but rarely were they paired with desirable Asian men.
It was almost shocking when I’d turn on the TV and see an Asian man who wasn’t the tech nerd or the token immigrant speaking with a heavy accent at the local laundromat. Or I’d see an Asian woman who wasn’t the bitch, the sex object, or the stoic professional. So early on I made a decision that when I created my first project, I’d write Asian Americans in the way that I had always wanted to see them.
Since the release of Kat Loves LA earlier this year, the feedback has been amazing. I never thought industry professionals like David Shore (Emmy winning creator of “House” and “The Good Doctor”) and Bobby Moresco (Academy Award-winning writer of “Crash” and “Million Dollar Baby”) would have cared to watch our series, let alone given us feedback. It was incredibly encouraging as a first-time filmmaker.
But there was one piece of feedback that sat uneasily with me and it came from within the Asian American community. It was the use of the word “groundbreaking.”
Asian Americans generally don’t consider themselves to be the disadvantaged minority. Most of us go through life without the systematic violence associated with anti-Black crime, or outward hostility associated with anti-Mexican rhetoric. But I will assert that the racism we face is sinister because of its subtlety (and many times, it is not so subtle).
The fact that a silly web series could be considered “groundbreaking” is just one example of how emasculated, silenced, and misrepresented we are as a group. America has made it foreign for us to see ourselves as the romantic leads in our own lives.
When people say, “you don’t have it so bad” and “What do you have to complain about? You’re doing so well”, I say:
“Have you ever felt discounted because you were Asian?”
“Have you ever felt emasculated because you were Asian?”
“Have you ever experienced violence because you were Asian?”
“Do you ever have to question whether someone will meet you with a frown or smile because you’re Asian?”
“Do you have to tolerate racist jokes and pretend like it doesn’t matter because you’re Asian?”
It makes me upset that people can grow up in this world and feel lesser-than simply by being who they are. That society wants to shut us up and shut us out because they feel like they can. That people tell us “we don’t have it so bad” or “why complain” because we work our asses off to gain higher levels of success that we’ve jumped through hoops to achieve. That we are meant to feel simultaneously guilty for our hard-earned success, and ashamed for our own advocacy. That our kids grow up in a world where they feel like they are lesser than because media teaches them so. And it makes me sad that we have been conditioned to run away from each other in order to run toward a “Whiteness” that we can never achieve and should never want to achieve in the first place.
I don’t want to live in that world.
Al says that every generation has a chance. This is ours. Let’s work together to create a future where we can be unapologetically Asian American. Where we can wear our skin proudly—even arrogantly.
Why are we the forgotten race in this country? It’s because we have allowed ourselves to be silenced. It’s because we have been taught that succeeding in a White world means blending in. It’s because we have allowed ourselves to be shackled by these racial constructs that were created to stunt us, to box us in, and ultimately, to control us.
We need to wake up and raise each other up.
If I’m being 100% honest, Kat Loves LA Season 2 is not something I necessarily wanted to pursue. It was incredibly hard work and cost me a good chunk of my own personal savings to complete. It also exposed parts of my life that were not welcome. But it was only through the first season that I’ve come to see there is work to be done in our community that goes beyond content creation. So I’m reaching out to you and asking you to donate to Season 2, but I also see this as an opportunity to spread awareness about a new pro-Asian movement that I hope you will feel ignited to join.
Movements cannot happen with a few individuals — it takes a collective.
Donation or not, please join us in empowering a new kind of voice. Al always says it takes 3% of the population to change the collective. Let’s form that 3%. I want to see more of our voices being represented in media, business, art, sports, academia, politics, etc. But in order to do that, we need to educate ourselves and others and not feel afraid of owning our power.
I hope that Kat Loves LA is just one of many opportunities we will have in the near future to create more content from a pro-Asian voice.
Also, if you want to join us in our pro-Asian movement, let’s start the discussion here: @pagetkagy @Alberthur888
You can find our pro-Asian podcast video series called “Not Your Asian Sidekick” here: https://www.youtube.com/user/sparkleblue27
Thank you for taking the time to read.
— Paget Kagy, writer & creator of Kat Loves LA