Many things in this world walk the thin line between funny and just plain sad — the “Jerry Springer Show,” Christian metal bands and Carrot Top, just to name a few. Now add to that list a recent discovery of mine, the dating website ClassyAsianLadies.com.
I’m not really even sure where to begin with this one.
When I first stumbled across the website, I considered the possibility that it was created in satire. First, the site has an entire section that nonchalantly explains why you should date Asian women. Titled “Asian Women’s Unique Surprises” — you know, because we’re like Easter eggs —, the page criticizes the average woman for being “very competitive and even a bit more masculine than their counterparts in earlier generations.” Asian women, on the other hand, still retain their “Eastern values.”
And what exactly are these “Eastern values?” According to ClassyAsianLadies.com — a supremely reliable guide in racial and ethnic traditions, no doubt — Asian women have a “loving and gentle nature,” making them “extremely loyal, supportive and dedicated to their men” — and they rarely complain!
I must say, I never realized how much I evidently share in common with your typical Labradoodle puppy until now.
But even if these points weren’t enough to win you over, the site goes on to casually assert that “the Asian lady helps her man to use money wisely and save but without being intrusive.” Unlike those gold-digger girlfriends you had in the past, this one won’t be expecting you to treat her to dinner any time soon — rather, she’ll happily pull out her abacus and file your taxes for you like a proper wife should.
The site buys into nearly every racist and sexist stereotype against Asian women that I can think of off the top of my head — that they’re obedient, subservient, soft-spoken hard workers who will stay at home, cook, clean and raise the kids, all the while “retaining their youthful beauty and shapely figures well into middle age and beyond.”
But here’s the kicker: the creator of the site is an Asian woman herself. She even refers to herself, on her site, as “matchmaker Yan” — what is this, Mulan? — and a self-proclaimed “relationship guru” who specializes in bringing together “high-quality men” with “sweet, attractive Asian women.” (Because if you’re an ugly Asian woman, you can just leave the site now — no fatties, either.)
And don’t worry; there are absolutely, definitely no creepers whatsoever on this site that solely caters to men who only want to date Asian women. The male suitors who use this service are repeatedly described as “sincere” men who “love and respect the Asian women and the Asian culture” — you know, because that huge mass of land has only produced one culture in its thousands of years of history.
Although it would make sense if “matchmaker Yan” were simply exploiting stereotypes for her own benefit and success, I can’t even begin to contemplate the mentality of the many women who voluntarily join this site — its completely self-demeaning.
Indeed, the name of the site itself suggests that this is a place men come to find a specific type of woman, not the other way around, and with its endless profile pages with pictures of anonymous, random Asian women evidently eager (or desperate) to find a new “owner,” the site bears an uncanny resemblance to an animal adoption website at best, and an internet version of the worst Southeast Asian brothel on a bad day.
I don’t really have anything against internet dating websites — simply ones that are more interested in setting men up with submissive, mail-order Asian brides than helping people find true relationships. And aside from the fetishists that frequent ClassyAsianLadies.com, let’s not forget another prominent sect of adult males that enjoys selecting females based on one unique identifying feature, whether it be her race, her eye color or the way she wears her hair — they’re called serial killers.
Okay, that may be taking it a step too far, but the point stands: How can these women feel comfortable or trusting with men who show interest in them simply because of their race? The site pays more attention to the fact of their race and their appearance than to any other important points that real relationships are built upon — such as personality, interests or hobbies. How can these women love someone who cares more about what they are than who they are as a person, and could easily replace them with another woman similar in appearance?
We are well into the 21st century; gone are the days of match-making, feet-binding, petite, submissive Asian wives and whatever other ridiculous racist and sexist traditions dating websites like ClassyAsianLadies.com attempts to conjure. Matchmaker Yan, let’s leave it like that.
Editorials Editor Catherine Cai is a College sophomore from Atlanta.