I realize that when I point out how something as seemingly benign as the “won ton” font bugs me, readers might think I’m being petty and overly sensitive. But I hope those readers will respect my opinion if something does piss me off. Plus, I hope everyone can understand why certain things are just plain offensive to Asian Americans, not as a result of over-sensitivity but simply because they’re racist stereotypes.
One of them is the “ching-chong’ accent that comes out of the http://www.funvidapps.com/Site/LuckyFortune.html“>Lucky Fortune iPhone app, which Apple has approved for its iPhone App Store while they turn down other apps.
Both Jennifer 8 Lee’s Fortune Cookie Chronicles blog and Gawker have pointed out that this app is racially offensive. The Gawker post includes a video of the app in action.
It’s a cute idea at first: You break open a fortune cookie, and hear one of a series of pre-recorded fortunes.
The problem is the voice that reads the fortune is a fake Chinese accent — the kind I’ve heard all my childhood and even as an adult, when a racist taunts me. “Go back where you came from, Jap/Chink/Nip/Gook,” go the echoes in my head today.Asian Americans call it a “ching-chong” sound, a phony rendition of what a white person think is the sound of Chinese. Continue reading