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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Mailbag: Jan. 20

Abusive “”Chinese way”” of parenting a stereotype

This letter is in regards to Kristina Bui’s opinion article, “”Parents’ high expectations not harmful.””

Bui wrote a defense of Amy Chua’s book, “”Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother,”” which details how Chua raised and taught her children. Chua would use such encouragements as calling her children pathetic, never letting them do anything other than focus on their studies at all times, and deciding to be the “”bad guy”” to them for their own good in order to make them get A’s and play piano perfectly. Bui, in her article, showed no evidence to the reader as to how this is not harmful to Chua’s children, either with semantic fact or philosophic principle.

I must, therefore, respectfully and inevitably disagree with Bui.

I believe that honor (a virtue I raise as the most important in my heart, and a virtue held at the core of all East Asian philosophy) requires us to be respectful in every way to others. It requires we never endanger others to pain or suffering, emotionally or physically, without absolute necessity. It requires we show this respect even to our enemies. With that being said, it most assuredly requires we show this respect to our students and children, even if it means letting them fail in their own endeavors.

Do not mistake strict, prison-like schedules, harsh and insulting words, or being the “”bad guy”” for the greater good as an example of persistence and fortitude: it is abuse.

No honorable teacher abuses their student. I think that sometimes teachers and parents begin to believe they are solely responsible for how well or quickly their student or child learns. They no longer see the pupil as a human, but an object they must personally forge. Truly honorable teachers, however, do not see their students as objects they are responsible for forging, but as humans to impart knowledge and skills to. More importantly, they can achieve similar results as Chua’s without her use of coercion.

The truth is that we all forge our own lives. We all learn at our own pace. We must recognize this and never let someone else try to forge our lives for us, even if they are bigger, stronger, smarter, or your parents (who should remember they are bigger and stronger than their children and should be gentle).

There is a stereotype that East Asian parents always bring up their children in the way that Chua has. I beg all who read her book, or any criticism about her book, to disregard her experiences as the rule and see them as the exception.

Samuel Shumaker

Former Daily Wildcat editor

Standards for grieving uncalled for

I’ve seen a number of criticisms of the behavior of the mourners when President Obama visited, and I’d like to ask those individuals to come over here and teach our students and community members how to grieve appropriately. Perhaps they can give us give us cues when to cry so we seem “”polite.””

Each person has his or her own way of grieving. For many of us, that meant expressing our joy when we were given hope. We clapped when we learned that Gabby opened her eyes. We cheered to see government officials come down here to say some words to show that they are mourning with us. We were excited to see so many people come together to remember. For many of us, that doesn’t mean sitting silently. Believe it or not, the mourners outside of UMC aren’t silent either; many of us who have met Gabby talk and laugh about conversations we’ve had. People sing, they cheer when they get positive updates and they generally embrace hope. I don’t see how our behavior at McKale was any different.

But I’m sure our students wouldn’t mind if someone attended funerals with us to teach us how to mourn to their standards. Apparently being a robot is the appropriate behavior at a memorial.

Christina Bischoff

ASUA Pride Alliance intern



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