Wednesday, August 30, 2006

a KidHero discussion

This is an excerpt from this discussion

Re: My opinion...
(Anonymous)
2006-08-29 02:46 am UTC (link)
It's amazing to read all of this in blogs and sites that i find just by typing in my name on Google. The dialogue is rich here but honestly, do people think I'm hard to contact at all? I'm not Steven Spielberg. I'm just an email away. On the BEBOT website and on my mailing lists, I have invited everyone FROM DAY ONE to ask me questions because I knew even before this open letter was created, exactly what I was getting myself into. There's a problem when I see so much discussion here about our work and yet I've only gotten only 3-4 emails with questions. It's like a party you were invited late to but everyone's already talking about you even before you arrive. It really makes me not want to share my experiences and just shut up. Was there ever an open letter created about our work on THE APL SONG 2 years or any help to use the video as a tool to educate folks about the Filipino veterano and their equity? That was an even bigger struggle! No, because its only the negative stuff that makes for a worthy discussion and public spectacle.
-KidHero
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Re: My opinion...
(Anonymous)
2006-08-29 10:43 pm UTC (link)
"It's like a party you were invited late to but everyone's already talking about you even before you arrive. It really makes me not want to share my experiences and just shut up."

I'm not completely convinced that the last response was from the director or one of the producers. It seems pretty misguided to think that the discussions about the "Bebot" videos are solely about the artists' creative merits or personal efforts.

I'm happy to see this dialogue occur. As a Filipino American artist myself, the territory we're all working with here is plagued by histories of misrepresentation, racism, and explicit sexism. All of which, are not at the responsibility of an individual artist. Rather, progressive artists (particularly those within popular culture) are always negotiating hegemony.

The dialogues I find most interesting to me, are the honest comments on whether the absence of tackling the exploitation of Filipina women worth breaking into the mainstream.

In no way do I think the letter or most of the criticisms were intended to discredit the artists' abilities. The video obviously displays amazing work, tremendous organizing, professional character, and a clear progressive effort. Rather, this is going to be a perpetual dialogue as long as the art of Filipino Americans (and Americans in general) feel the urgency to challenge patriarchy, racism, and heteronormativity. All of which, I believe, are bigger than "Bebot".

Mark
"It's bigger than hip-hop"

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