To the editors:
The commentary by Michael Miner in your May 15 issue entitled "Buy American, Burn Asian" cannot pass for satire, and certainly not for responsible journalism. Issues related to global economic restructuring and the pain and suffering it has brought to communities and individuals everywhere do need to be addressed seriously, on a consistent basis, not just for one week after a community's desperate response.
Michael Miner has demeaned all people by his repetition of one racial stereotype after another in the guise of a joke about jobs and unemployment. It is the tolerance of this kind of humor in our culture which led to the murder of Vincent Chin, and undergirds the rise of racial violence across the country.
The Reader ordinarily doesn't print the kind of blatantly racist material which exacerbates conflicts and tensions among communities. I believe an apology is in order, particularly to the Korean and Japanese communities, as well as to inner city residents who were also maligned in this article. And your editorial staff need to become clear that repetition of racist stereotypes is not funny and not responsible.
Great Lakes Regional Office
American Friends Service Committee