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The Minority Report | Ashley Kim

Photo Credit: Bobby Jones

When I was 16, I wanted to be an actress. At 18, I wanted to be a sports reporter. Now, I dream of having my own TV show. All of these professions are ones dominated by cis white males. However, I have fortunately, never doubted my ability to succeed in them. I believed anything was possible. I never thought my race or gender was a deciding factor in whether or not I would be able to succeed. I still feel this way, even though I’ve become too familiar with the ways in which society wants me to fail.

“I fell into the allure of white privilege”

I have my parents to thank for this resilient mindset. My parents are South Korean immigrants. They moved to the United States in the 1970s, searching for a better life. They’ve done exactly that; they’ve built a better life and so, so much more.

My dad served in the US military for nearly nine years. My mom worked countless hours in order to send money back to her family in South Korea. My dad is now a retired government employee, and my mom owns a small, successful business and still sends money back to her family. They are the hardest workers I know. They are true Americans, through and through.

Growing up in America, I fell into the allure of white privilege. I slowly grew further away from my Korean heritage growing up in a predominantly white suburb. I resented being Korean because I felt like being white would make everything and anything more accessible for me.

My heart has broken a thousand times over because of this. Everyday, I feel guilty. Everyday, I try to be better. There are still days I fall short. My parents are proud of their
background, and I should have been too. I am now.

As I’ve grown older (and wiser, I’d like to think), I have fallen in love with being Korean all over again. I hope to pursue my dream career and break through an industry that favors anyone but me to share my parent’s story, one that epitomizes the American Dream. After all, my parents didn’t move here for me to give up.

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