Sam Okyere talks about racism in Korea and the problematic usage of 'black brother'

Article: "Please call me by my name rather than 'heuk hyung'"... Sam Okyere confesses about racism in Korea

Source: Ilgan Sports via Nate

heuk hyung = black brother

1. [+2,057, -89] Ah... heuk hyung.. I never thought of the word as racist and I'm so embarrassed for that. I thought it was just a friendly, witty term of endearment. I'll have to fix that, how does Okyere oppa sound ㅋㅋ

2. [+1,713, -67] He's right. Racism is rampant in Korea. If you're not a handsome blonde English speaker, people will be racist to you.

3. [+1,570, -74] I understand elders being racist because they haven't had much opportunities to come across foreigners but our generation shouldn't be like that, especially to South East Asianers...

4. [+93, -5] If the person feels that he is being discriminated against, then it is our responsibility to stop it

5. [+65, -7] He himself is saying he hates being called black brother so why would anyone try to argue that it's not racist? It's not right at all to call someone by their race. You need to see them as a human being before the color of their skin. It's like Asians having to suffer questions like "Are you a ninja? Are you good at piano? Are you good at math" by foreigners overseas. It doesn't matter if it's a compliment, judging someone by their race is wrong.

6. [+49, -3] I lived in Ghana for about three years and my friends always ask me if I see giraffes and lions everywhere but there are really only dogs ㅋㅋ I could relate so hard when Okyere-ssi said there are only dogs where he's from ㅋㅋ

7. [+42, -7] Black brother... I never thought of that word as wrong but now I see that it might be taken the wrong way by the other side

8. [+38, -4] I never once thought of black brother as racist because I always thought it meant the person had swag and force...

9. [+37, -3] Black brother isn't a word I use myself but I never thought it'd be something to be offended by either. Adding 'hyung' to it, like the first best reply says, was to make it like a term of endearment, but I guess it wasn't taken that way ㅜㅜ

10. [+31, -7] The word black brother itself might not necessarily be considered racist but it is problematic and racist in the fact that it completely ignores Sam Okyere's personality, life experiences, emotions, who he is as an individual person etc and judges him completely based on his skin color alone.

11. [+30, -1] If the person hearing it doesn't like hearing it, then just stop. Whether we mean well by it or not doesn't matter if he doesn't want to hear it.

12. [+25, -15] As a fellow man though, calling someone a black brother is usually meant from a tone of respect ㅋ

13. [+22, -7] When Koreans call someone a black brother though, it's usually to play up the superiority of their black features, no?

14. [+20, -6] Some of these comments have a long way to go... some of you are still trying to argue that it's not racist and how the word comes from a place of respect or how it doesn't mean ill. Let's just get one thing straight: if he says it's wrong to say it, it's wrong to say it. So just stop using it. Stop making up excuses.

15. [+19, -3] Of course if the person hearing it feels bad then we need to stop using it... but I just want him to know that black brother is not a word meant with racist intentions. Koreans use the word 'kkamdoong' as a racist term for black people. Black brother, however... is more used when we want to describe a black person as 'cool' or 'amazing'... but of course, if he doesn't want to hear it, then it's our responsibility to stop using it.