It certainly interesting to see so many Asians in American team, but I don't think it really matters. Nowadays, the racial issues are in a better state than 50 years ago, and the main thing that matters that the team overrall is really strong, which is not influenced by the number of white, black, Asian etc. people but by the quality of their skating.
... I think Michelle, Kristi, et al inspired a ton of skaters who were at U.S. Nationals this week. All but two of the junior ladies were Asian-American. And a lot of the up-and-coming men are also Asian American, like Dinh Tran. ...
... I think it's hard to comprehend if you're not Asian American.
Well, I am an American, and I also say, "Who cares?"
I'm proud of them, and I would be just as proud if they were black, white, Latino, or polka-dot.
And, for the record, my wife is of Japanese heritage, and so of course is my son (on her half of the gene pool).
Did you know the first non-European ancestry skaters of any country to ever medal at Worlds in ice dance are the Shibutanis? In a perfect world, the same opportunities would seem open to anyone regardless of race. However, that's not the world we're in - and a minority kid looking at ice dance before the Shibs broke that barrier would probably assume they're not welcome, especially given how subjective ice dance is. Think of how much more popular skating in general would be if it were more representation at the elite levels.
Representation is important for minority. Did you see how many notes Starr Andrew got in tumbrl? +5000, https://miyaharasatoko.tumblr.com/post/169372277289/starr-andrews-16-performs-a-clean-free-skate-at that amount of notes in figure skating only is gotten for Yuzu, Mao, Yuna, Evgenia. Starr not even won the competition.
Like I said, if you're extra happy Starr is black, then good for you. Go in peace.
And, funny that you mention it, but my boyhood dog lost his leg in an accident. I loved that dog, and cried like a baby when he died, and I was of drinking age.
I loved him not because he had three legs, but because he possessed every positive aspect a dog could have. He was my loyal and loving friend. The number of legs was irrelevant.
You might not feel like if you were a Spaniard, you would be extra excited about Javi's success, or as a Korean, not to be inspired by Yuna instead of Mao just because of your country/ethnicity, but they were the first to break those particular barriers, and you can't deny that its had an incredible impact on bringing new fans and new skaters from those countries as a direct result of that representation.
I root for Americans. Not only Americans... but if there's an American in the competition, I want them to skate their best.
I try not to let it effect my neutral view in evaluating performances and good/poor qualities in a skater - but I nearly always want Americans to do their best (unless they have gotten me PO'd). For example, I'll be rooting for Vincent like a madman - but I won't be blind to the fact that Hanyu is a better skater overall, and will beat him (barring a very bad performance and
Vincent skating lights out).
So, I completely understand why a Spaniard would root for Javi, and a Korean for Yuna, and a Japanese fan would root for Mao. That's only natural, right?
But I don't root for Bradie because she's white. I don't root for Mirai because she's Asian, and I won't root for Starr because she's black. I'll be pulling for all of them, with all my heart, because they're Americans[/U (and they haven't gotten on my bad side. The well can run dry).
And, yes, I understand that nationalism is becoming passe, and I don't care.
I respect that you feel that way, and that you would encourage an individual of any race or nationality to go for their dreams no matter what has been the case in the past, but not everyone in practice does that, or encourages that, unless it's been done before. The more skating is homogenous, the more it impacts the sport negatively.
Your should care because it's good for your son to have role models that look like him, or half like him. Something is mentally pleasing when possible OGM (no jinx) Nathan Chen is someone who looks like you.
Kristi was inspired by Tiffany, Michelle by Kristi, Karen by Michelle, etc.
I'm back on another reply to your post, because it has me thinking.
I do wish there were more skating access and opportunities for young people in Compton and Detroit. But I also wish there were more in Appalachia and the Deep South. And Wyoming.
We should strive to be a more national sport. Right now, Tim Dolensky is the only skater I can think of from the Deep South (and, no, Florida doesn't count).
There are pockets of figure skating in New England, California, parts of the Midwest, Colorado, maybe Florida (but I'm not sure). Maybe a few other places. That's it. And there is no denying that it is an outrageously expensive sport. I wish there were some way to provide greater access across the nation, and to make it more affordable for average and low-income families.