“Asian American Paper Tigers” by Wesley Yang: JT Tran’s Response to New York Magazine

By JT Tran

The entire Asian American blogosphere is in an uproar over the recent New York Magazine article by Wesley Yang, “Asian American Like Me: Paper Tigers – What happens to all the Asian-American overachievers when the test-taking ends?”

The popular thing to do right now are for the Asian American community activists (from female AA activists, LGBT actvists, to comic book writers and adult porn stars) to write up their rebuttals in order to ride the national attention that Wesley brings to the topic of the Bamboo Ceiling.

However, as one of the Asian Americans featured in the article that would be disingenuous (my story starts at the bottom of page 6 and is about addressing the interracial dating imbalance by being an Asian Pick Up Artist).  Quite frankly, I am in agreement with many of the points Wesley Yang made.

Yes, it is overly long and it falls into a solipsist tirade, but his points remain valid nonetheless. The Bamboo Ceiling exists and only a few of us are directly addressing those issues. Some have cried that what Wesley Yang did in his article about Asian American Paper Tigers is exploiting the issue, just like that of my teaching the art of seduction and becoming a pick up artist.

However, my counter to that is to use a real life example:

If someone identifies that Asian American female teens have a higher rate of suicide than the national average, is that besmirching Asian American pride?

How about if that same someone creates a mental health outreach program to help Asian female teens?

Is that directly addressing the problem in a constructive manner or exploiting it as the naysayers would claim?

And yes, Asian men do need help in dating. That’s a fact and trend.Here are some approximations from the U.S. Census Bureau:

  • 60% of Asian American females will marry Asian men.
  • 40% of AFs will marry a non-Asian male.
  • 20% of AMs will marry a non-Asian female.
  • By inference, that leaves 20% of ASIAN MEN WHO WILL NOT MARRY.
  • This does not even include the projected surplus of 24 million Chinese men that will occur in 2020. They literally will have no hope of getting a girlfriend or bride because of China’s one child policy because there aren’t enough Asian women who will be available, much less born and alive.

There exists a very REAL Bamboo Ceiling for Asian men when it comes to dating and that’s just one of the very few things our PUA curriculum and syllabus addresses during an ABCs of Attraction bootcamp.

Obviously, my approach is from an alternative angle- helping Asian men be confident and successful in their dating, sex life, and romantic life- but achieving confidence is something both universal and something that can be applied to all areas of our lives, from acing a job interview, negotiating a higher salary, and managing or leading a team of people.

My students have gone off to have sexual adventures, but to also fall in love, settle down, and get married. Our clients have gone off to achieve serious results ranging from one night stands, threesomes, serious girlfriends, and even marriages and just plain flat out being much HAPPIER with their lives.

To put it simplistically, a large part (not all, but let’s be honest, a significant part) of our male identity and self-respect comes from sex (whether its by marriage or simply “conquests”) which is why it plays such a large part in Wesley’s “coming of age” article. And by my profession, whether you want to call it being a “pick up artist” or “dating coach“, I coach men and a predominant (although not all) of them are minorities.

It is so SO important for Asian Americans to learn that emotional intelligence is a HIGHER PREDICTOR OF SUCCESS than simply your grades and college education. Working with people, interacting with them with confidence is what will make you both successful and happy.

The mission statement of my company falls in line with wanting to help my Asian brothers be successful in all areas of their lives. My mission statement is thusly to create societal change through pick up:

If I don’t see the sexual symbols and change, then it falls to me to  BE that change for others and help create it in others… like YOU.

My first client, in fact, was a Canadian Chinese mother who called me up after hearing about me from her son. She literally hired my to fly up to Toronto and help socialize her son who had been harassed by neo-Nazis in highschool. And for three days and three nights, I was the big brother he never had, teaching him the secret language that Wesley points out in the beginning of the story.

Anyways, hopefully Asian Americans who read this will begin to strike out on their own, to be more successful, and to achieve their own happiness.

And if I and my company can be of any small help in that part, I am proud to do my part.