US Professor calls India ‘Sh**hole’, Indian Americans slam remarks

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This is not the first time Wax’s controversial comments about race have gone viral…reports Asian Lite News

Leading Indian-Americans, including US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, have slammed a law professor from University of Pennsylvania for her disparaging comments about the Asian American community, with a specific disdain for Indian-Americans.

In a recent interview to Fox News, Prof Amy Wax from the University of Pennsylvania alleged that “Blacks” and “non-Western” groups have “a tremendous amount of resentment and shame against western people for [their] outsized achievements and contributions.” “Here’s the problem. They’re taught that they are better than everybody else because they are Brahmin elites and yet, on some level, their country is a sh**hole,” Wax, who has a long history of inflammatory remarks, said.

She also said that the westerners have outgunned and outclassed the Asian Americans in every way.

“They’ve realised that we’ve outgunned and outclassed them in every way… They feel anger. They feel envy. They feel shame. It creates ingratitude of the most monstrous kind,” she said.

Wax then targeted the influential Indian-American doctors’ community as well. “They are on the ramparts for the antiracism initiative for ‘dump on America,’” she alleged.

The comment was condemned by the Indian-Americans across the US.

“After President Trump left office, I thought the days of calling others “sh**hole” countries were over,” Krishnamoorthi said in a tweet.

“As an Indian-American immigrant, I’m disgusted to hear this UPenn Professor define Indian-American immigrants, and all non-white Americans, in such insulting terms,” he said.

Stating that such comments are borne of hatred and fear, he emphasised that such talks make it much harder to accomplish common-sense immigration reform.

“Comments like these are borne of hatred and fear, and they lead to real harm for my constituents and our minority communities. They fuel hate crimes against minorities, and they make it much harder to accomplish common-sense immigration reform,” Krishnamoorthi said.

Indian-American Law professor Neil Makhija also slammed Wax for her comments.

“It’s irresponsible to use your position to lend credibility to these overtly racist sentiments that don’t recognise Indian-Americans for who we are,” he told Axios.

Indian-American Impact is slated to hold a summit next month in DC Makjiha told Axios he’s planning to adjust programming to discuss the incident and create solutions against anti-Asian and South Asian hate in educational settings.

“The most unfortunate thing is that we have a lot of brilliant and incredible students at the law school,” he told NBC News.

“It makes you question whether she can fairly grade or educate,” he said.

This is not the first time Wax’s controversial comments about race have gone viral, the US media reported.

Her appearance on Carlson’s show is not the first time Wax has made anti-Asian remarks. In an interview in December, she said that Indians Americans should be more “grateful” to be in the US and that the country would be “better off with fewer Asians.” Penn has confirmed that the school is in the middle of disciplinary proceedings against Wax, NBC News reported.

“The University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School has previously made clear that Professor Wax’s views do not reflect our values or practices,” it quoted a representative as saying.

“In January 2022, Dean Ruger announced that he would move forward with a University Faculty Senate process to address Professor Wax’s escalating conduct, and that process is underway,” the report quoted the Penn representative as saying.

‘1 in 2 Indian-Americans discriminated’

Indian-Americans, who constitute the second-largest immigrant group in the US, regularly encounter discrimination and polarisation, according to a survey released on Wednesday.

The report, ‘Social Realities of Indian Americans: Results from the 2020 Indian American Attitudes Survey” draws on the Indian-American Attitudes Survey (IAAS) — a collaboration between the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Johns Hopkins-SAIS, and the University of Pennsylvania.

The findings of the report are based on a nationally representative online survey of 1,200 Indian-American residents in the US — the 2020 IAAS — conducted between September 1 and September 20, 2020, in partnership with the research and analytics firm YouGov, it said in a statement.

“Indian-Americans regularly encounter discrimination. One in two Indian Americans reports being discriminated against in the past one year, with discrimination based on skin colour identified as the most common form of bias.

“Somewhat surprisingly, Indian-Americans born in the United States are much more likely to report being victims of discrimination than their foreign-born counterparts,” said the report.

According to the report, Indian-Americans exhibit very high rates of marriage within their community.

While eight out of 10 respondents have a spouse or partner of Indian-origin, US-born Indian-Americans are four times more likely to have a spouse or partner who is of Indian-origin but was born in the United States.

The survey found that religion plays a central role in the lives of Indian-Americans but religious practice varies.

While nearly three-quarters of Indian-Americans state that religion plays an important role in their lives, religious practice is less pronounced.

Forty per cent of respondents pray at least once a day and 27 per cent attend religious services at least once a week.

The report notes that roughly half of all Hindu Indian-Americans identify with a caste group. Foreign-born respondents are significantly more likely than US-born respondents to espouse a caste identity. The overwhelming majority of Hindus with a caste identity — more than eight in 10 — self-identify as belonging to the category of General or upper caste.

“Indian-American” itself is a contested identity. While Indian-American is a commonly used shorthand to describe people of Indian-origin, it is not universally embraced. Only four in 10 respondents believe that “Indian-American” is the term that best captures their background, the report said.

Civic and political engagement varies considerably by one’s citizenship status. Across nearly all metrics of civic and political participation, US-born citizens report the highest levels of engagement, followed by foreign-born US citizens, with non-citizens trailing behind.

Indian-Americans’ social communities are heavily populated by other people of Indian-origin. Indian-Americans — especially members of the first generation — tend to socialise with other Indian-Americans.

Internally, the social networks of Indian-Americans are more homogenous in terms of religion than either Indian region (state) of origin or caste.

The report says that polarisation among Indian-Americans reflects broader trends in the American society.

“While religious polarisation is less pronounced at an individual level, partisan polarisation — linked to political preferences both in India and the United States — is rife. However, this polarisation is asymmetric: Democrats are much less comfortable having close friends who are Republicans than the converse,” it said.

The same is true of Congress Party supporters vis-a-vis supporters of the BJP.

“To some extent, divisions in India are being reproduced within the Indian-American community. While only a minority of respondents are concerned about the importation of political divisions from India to the United States, those who identify religion, political leadership and political parties in India as the most common factors,” the report added.

Indian-Americans comprise slightly more than 1 per cent of the total US population-and less than 1 per cent of all registered voters.

Indian Americans are the second-largest immigrant group in the United States. There are 4.2 million people of Indian origin residing in the United States, according to 2018 data.

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