Asian American Experiences in the United States
Happy AAPI Heritage month! We’re back with another post on honoring our Asian American brothers and sisters. You ready? Today we’re talking all things related to the Asian American experience in the United States. There are millions of people in the United States of Asian descent. Asians make up a large diverse racial group in the country that adds valuable diversity to American culture. Asians are a part of American culture dating way back to our founding years. Throughout the centuries they’ve only increased their footprint and impact on our society as a whole. According to the 2019 Census Bureau population estimate, Asian Americans represent 5.7 percent of the total US population, and growing!
So what is it like to be Asian in America? Sadly, in the present day, Asian Americans still experience brutal xenophobia and racism. This has become increasingly common since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, in recent months the United States has seen a rise in violent attacks against the Asian community. It is absolutely vital to speak out against racism, violence, or hate of any kind. We must all share Asian American stories, history, and experiences. At Dear Media we’re all about amplifying the diverse voices that make up not just the podcasting world, but our world in general. So today, in honor of our Asian American friends, family, coworkers, acquaintances, and beyond, we hope to shine a light on Asian American experiences in the United States.
Asian American Experiences in the United States
The Asian experience in America has not been easy:
In order to get an idea of what Asians have overcome in America, we need to take a step back and look at the history. So let’s do a quick recap shall we? And yes, we’re going with the Cliff Notes version of history. So don’t @ us for leaving something out.
The first big wave of Asian immigration to the United States took place on the West Coast during the California Gold Rush in 1850. With associations such as the Asian Exclusion League and the institution of the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882, we didn’t exactly roll out the welcome mat if you know what I mean. In fact Chinese immigration and later all Asian immigration to the United States was virtually prohibited. And let’s not forget one of our darkest moments, when Asian Americans were forced into internment camps. Exclusionary policies and sentiments towards Asian Americans are unfortunately a part of the American story. You can read more about that history HERE.
How Asian Americans beat the odds & continue to crush it:
Even with this turbulent history, Asian Americans continue to succeed and build their lives in America. According to a recent PEW Research poll, Asian Americans are some of the most successful and highly educated people in America. Americans of Asian descent currently hold the highest median household income and are less likely to live in poverty. It’s no wonder we’re seeing so many incredible Asian Girl Bosses to model our hustle after. According to that same PEW Research Poll, Asian Americans are more likely to believe that hard work creates success and believe America is still full of opportunities for Asian Americans. It’s that positive attitude, relentless drive, and optimistic attitude that we can all aspire to and emulate.
Challenges facing the Asian Community in America:
Even with all their success, Asian Americans face unique challenges living in the United States. A recent survey found that one third of Asian Americans fear being threatened or physically abused. This number is larger than what other minority groups tent to report. That same survey concluded that 80% of Asian Americans feel that violence against them is increasing. And unfortunately, they’re not wrong. The data shows that threats and violent attacks on Asian Americans has increased in recent months.
So what can we do about it?
In 2020 & 2021, there have been a lot of challenges. However, there has also been a lot of learning and a lot of growth. Especially on the topic of race and becoming better allies to our friends in marginalized groups. We’re not there yet, but we’re more equipped now than we were before. We can of course show our support, donate money, donate time, and take a personal stand in support of our Asian American countrymen. We can also listen and continue to learn. One thing is for sure, listening to diverse voices is key for growing our awareness of diverse experiences. So with that!
Get to know our Asian American voices on a more personal level:
Dear Media is proud to have such a diverse group of hosts making serious moves in the podcasting space. What better way to get to know and amplify the Asian American and Pacific Islander voices in America than listening to them directly? Hear their stories, learn from their experiences, and also gain major inspiration for your own life and success story. Below is a list of Asian American and Pacific Islander Dear Media podcast hosts. Get to know them and tune in to their shows!
Chriselle Lim of Being Bumo:
Say hello to the host of the parenting podcast, Being Bumo! Chriselle Lim is a well-known digital influencer, entrepreneur, fashion stylist, fierce mom, and host of her parenting podcast. She is a Texas-born Korean American. She lived four of her early years in Seoul, with her parents and sister.
In America, Chriselle followed in her mother’s footsteps within the fashion world and studied at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising from 2004 to 2008. With the launch of her YouTube channel and the creation of her blog The Chriselle Factor in 2011, her path as a fashion influencer began to unfold in a very successful manner. She married Allen Chen, who is Taiwanese American, and she proudly raises her two daughters to be multilingual. In her household, they practice speaking English, Korean and Mandarin. Her family honors and celebrates many traditions from their Asian American heritage like the 100th Day Celebrations. Together they also indulge in ethnic food, cultural songs, children’s books, as well as making traditional fashion a part of their life, and she is grateful for every bit of it.
If you want to learn more about how Chriselle teaches her kids about diversity and inclusion, as she chats with a diversity expert, listen to the following episode of Being Bumo! Teaching Kids About Diversity and Inclusion with Charnaie Gordon.
Deepika Chopra of Looking Up:
You already know her as the Optimism Doctor and are probably familiar with her podcast, Looking Up. Dr. Deepika Chopra is of Asian descent, as an Indian American. Her parents are both Indian and immigrated to the United States to relocate to New Jersey. Her father, Dr. Deepak Chopra, is a renowned author and alternative medicine advocate who came to the United States to practice as a doctor. Deepika followed his path and received her doctorate in Clinical Psychology from UCLA, specializing in mind-body connection and strategies to increase happiness and resilience. As a recent mother, she is focusing on techniques for increasing empathy and optimism in children.
As part of her Asian American experience, Deepika had a traditional Hind-Jew wedding back in 2015 where she married her husband, Alexander Mark Silverman. The ceremony celebrated both her Indian heritage and American culture, taking place in Los Palos Verdes, California.
To learn more about the life of Dr. Deepika Chopra and her career as the Optimism Doctor, tune in to the following episode of Looking Up: Getting Personal with Dr. Deepika Chopra: Looking Back On Looking Up Season Three.
Patrick Starrr of Say Yas to the Guest:
Patrick Starrr is a makeup guru and beauty expert with a vibrant personality. Many know him for his successful career as a beauty influencer and his podcast, Say Yas to the Guest. His show is centered around the biggest personalities of the beauty industry and hosts several notable guests such as Manny Mua, Mikayla, Nikita Dragun, Jen Atkin, and Erika La Pearl.
Patrick is Filipino-American. His parents emigrated from the Philippines to the United States before he and his brothers were born. As an Asian Pacific American, he is very vocal about Asian American experiences and is proud to bring a diverse dynamic to the cosmetics world. Since the beginning of his makeup career at MAC Cosmetics, Patrick has strived to break the stigma surrounding men wearing makeup. He is really close with his family and loves to spend time with his two brothers, Paul and Peter.
Get to know Patrick better in this episode of Say Yas To The Guest: Alisha and Remi – Vlogging Millionaire Moguls.
Marianna Hewitt of Life with Marianna:
When it comes to Asian women who built an incredible beauty empire, Marianna Hewitt is at the top of the list. She was one of the first beauty influencers and now owns her own skincare brand, Summer Fridays. Her podcast, Life With Marianna, is all about cosmetics, beauty, and skincare. A celebrity guest or industry expert joins her each week to discuss various beauty topics. She also strives to empower her audience in relation to entrepreneurship and making it in the beauty industry.
Marianna is Vietnamese American. Her mother emigrated to the United States from Vietnam. Her father is from Pennsylvania, though his descent is from Italy. She’s proud of her roots and always eager to learn and get to know herself better. If you want to learn more about her ancestry, check out this blog post.
Tune in to the following episode of Life With Marianna to listen to her talk about representation in beauty and the challenges of funding your own brand with Deepica Mutyala: Deepica Mutyala on Representation in Beauty and Being a Brand Founder.
Anisha Ramakrishna of Currently Cringing:
If you are a follower of the reality tv show Family Karma you probably recognize Anisha Ramakrishna as a reality tv personality. The Bravo reality premiered in March 2020 and follows the lives of seven traditional Indian American families as three generations coexist in the same area. The host of the candid podcast show, Currently Cringing, is proudly Indian American. So you can definitely expect her to get real about her experiences as a daughter of immigrants in America.
Anisha grew up in a traditional Indian household in South Florida, with many generations living in the same home. Unlike Indian tradition, she moved out of her house before marriage. She lived a life of her own in New York. However after 12 years of climbing the fashion industry ladder in the big apple, Anisha left both her NYC career and long-term relationship. She moved back to Miami with her parents. Why? To take a risk and create her own clothing line. Now she is a reality tv star, podcast host, & entrepreneur on the way to making her dreams come true.
Get to know Anisha in this episode of Currently Cringing as she discusses her upbringing and living life on her own terms: Not Checking Boxes with Caroline Stanbury.
Dom Roberts of the Uncomfortable Podcast:
When it comes to taking action, Dom Roberts isn’t to be played with. At 22 years old she decided enough was enough and change needed to happen. She left her full time job at Nordstrom to pursue her passion. She felt a deep desire to be an inspiration to anyone who felt like they needed a confidence boost to speak out about uncomfortable current events. With skill and grace, she educated her followers and found creative ways to help people self-reflect and find the tools to take valuable steps forward.
What sparked Dom’s interest to be a vessel was growing up in a predominantly white neighborhood in Arizona. Dom found herself hesitant to speak out about racism due to fear and worries about backlash and others’ reactions.
Today, Dom is a creative activist and host of The Uncomfortable Podcast. She encourages touchy-subjects like white privilege, racism, cancel culture, and mental health. She is now confident and powerful and is being heard by celebrities like Reese Witherspoon and Viola Davis. This time around, she has vowed to hold nothing back and empowers all of us to do the same.
To better get to know this powerful voice, tune in to The Uncomfortable Podcast!
Chinae Alexander of Press Send:
Meet Chinae Alexander, your go-to girl for honest, advice on all your burning questions. Chinae is very open and proud of being mixed race. She is half-Korean, half-Caucasian. Back in 2018 she openly shared her thoughts on being mixed race & the privilege that has come with. Not only is Chinae open and honest about her heritage, she’s a body confidence aficionado, successful social entrepreneur, and professional life advise giver on her show Press Send. Press Send is a platform for you to ask all your burning questions either directly to Chinae, or to any of her incredible guests. She always brings her trademark honesty to the issues, big and small. And you can always guarantee that the topics she’s bringing to the table or discussions that women actually care about. This half Korean bombshell is all about encouraging herself, her guests, and of course her listeners to boldly ask questions.
Get to know Chinae, and expect plenty of humor, heart, and badassery from each episode HERE.
Do you have a personal experience you’d like to share?
All Asian American experiences and stories should be celebrated! What better way to do so than to learn more about some of your favorite podcast hosts? In the present day, American culture is so richly intertwined with Asian American heritage. We have to amplify their personal stories and fight against the racist stigmas regarding Asian immigrants. By listening to their voices we show our appreciation and learn about their endless contributions to society. We are taking a step forward together in hopes to put an end to the recent spikes of violence and discrimination. Making their diverse voices heard is our top priority. So we hope you have fun listening to all these incredible hosts and their experiences!
Finally, if you have a story to share about your own personal experience in the United States as an Asian America, tell us in the comments below! We would love to hear more about your own trials, tribulations, and of course unique experiences as a person of Asian descent.