Eugene Cho

this is the kind of post where i don’t even know what to title it kind of post

Let me first take a moment. Let me gather my thoughts so I don’t say anything stupid or un-Christlike – especially about this first video that speaks of the supposed goodness of God – in the face of the current tragedy in Japan.

[breath in. breathe out.]

Let me show you two YouTube videos that at least 2 dozen folks have emailed me asking for my thoughts:

“God is so Good”

This one entitled, God is so Good, is downright ridiculous. It may actually be worse than what Pat Robertson shared immediately after the Haiti earthquake. It makes me angry. Really angry and frustrated.

Update: Supposedly, the video below is the product of a troll. I don’t even know what that means. What does that mean?

And the video and the person’s account has since been deleted.

The power of my blog. Muhahaha.

Here’s my advice to her. Don’t pray for earthquakes and tsunamis for atheists.

Just go and love people. Be Christlike…

Watch it and let me know what you think:

The second video was something I was planning on ignoring because honestly…why fan the flames? But this video has unfortunately gone viral and major news publications have blogged and written about this video.

In a sentence summary: A UCLA female Caucasian student posted a personal rant on YouTube about Asians in the library [delete stereotypes in your mind that just entered your mind right now].

Let’s not mince words: The video conveys ignorance, prejudice, and some serious immaturity. And while we’re at it: Let me make a PSA and tell folks to please put on a decent shirt.

But back to the video.

While it wouldn’t be fair and constructive for me to call her a racist, I think we have to call stuff for what it is. The video itself is stupid.

I don’t have much more to say about the content except the that the comment about the tsunami was particularly uncool. But I do want to touch briefly on how we respond.

I’ve been alarmed at what seems to be an escalation of the war of words and insults on web forums and also on youtube and supposedly, on the UCLA campus. While I think it’s fair – since it was initially place on a public venue – to publicly address the video for what it is – a rant from a young, immature, and ignorant person who made a very poor decision, we don’t have to vilify and demonize the individual.

Again, I’m not suggesting we give her a free pass…

but to condemn her beyond redemption would be the worst thing that anyone can do.

And so…

  • If she has any Asian friends, I sincerely and genuinely hope that they’ll reach out to her. And how cool would it be if they chose to study with her in the library!😉
  • I sincerely hope her Caucasian friends and ALL her friends will reach out to her to encourage her to consider the weight of what she shared publicly and to actually apologize. And to support and love her.
  • I hope that if she has any Christian friends, they would express God’s love for her.

If there’s ever a time to express grace, this would the time.

If she or any of her friends are reading this, let her know that I forgive her, care for her well being, and welcome the opportunity to chat with her. I’ll be down in LA in May!

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24 Responses

  1. Andrea says:

    Eugene,

    This video has been making the rounds the past 24 hours. And supposedly, the first video is actually satire or someone that’s intentionally seeking hits to her You Tube page. Doesn’t make it right but just sayin’.

  2. ac says:

    “luckily” the first video’s poster came out and said she did it to cause a stir, and to “piss people off” in her own words. so it was “fake” in a while, but still disgusting.

  3. Greg says:

    I sincerely hope that both of these are trolls:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troll_%28Internet%29

  4. catesongbird says:

    I don’t get the point of trying to get hits if the content sucks. I suppose these 2 vids are prime examples of the negative sides to everything being so public nowadays. They both remind me of Charlie Sheen. I need to just ignore it for the time being and then I will process how to love these people later on.

  5. Tina says:

    Pastor Eugene,
    Whether these videos are real or not…
    I’m feeling disgusted and quite offended by them (and sad, too, that someone might find it “funny” or appropriate to do that). Thank you, though, for the reminder of the importance of our response. It means a lot more, hearing it from a fellow Asian American.

  6. gar says:

    Idiots, both of them. God, why do make so hard to love people?!

    On a side note, is it just me or does the girl in the 2nd video sound really jealous that Asian American students have family that visit them on the weekends? Her excuse of “annoying old people” sounds just bitter.

  7. Megan says:

    I had heard of these videos earlier in the day, but couldnt get the links to work. So I’m just watching them for the first time right now. My initial impressions are totally different for each girl.

    The first girl, apart from making me extremely uncomfortable for espousing herself to praying to God for vengeance, made me think she must be brainwashed by someone. I do not take away from God’s holiness or justice and know that He will not be mocked, but what arrogance and callousness must possess a person to claim that they know for certain that some natural disaster is the result of his or her prayer!

    I may be preaching to the choir here, but in answering the question about the greatest commandment under the law, Jesus said to love God with all of your heart, your soul, your mind, and closely followed that with loving others as yourself. I do not see either type of love from this first young lady. She claims she loves God, but I’m not sure if she really knows who God is. And the multiple times she said “brothers and sisters” just smacked of brainwashing–that is not the typical speech of a young woman–and frankly gave me the creeps.

    The second young lady came across as ignorant and self-centered. Saying, “I’m not PC” doesn’t give you a free pass to say whatever you want. secondly, I find it extremely ironic that she attempts to school anyone on “American manners” while quite lacking in manners herself. And don’t get me started on her racist impersonation of how Asians speak or how she surmises that since she’s never seen an “American” (read: white kid) talk on their phone in the library it must not happen ever.

    I am done now, but I’m left with a bad taste in my mouth. How can we educate these girls and so many like them?

  8. Irene says:

    Like Megan, I also had two different reactions about the two girls. Granted, they were different because of the warning that the first video was someone who was posting to either be tongue in cheek or else get hits. Whatever her reason, it always saddens me when we’re reminded of how the world sees the church and then it saddens me even more to remember that it does so for good reason. I can honestly say that I remember not even 15 years ago when the church as a majority was still saying such awful things like AIDS happened because God was punishing homosexuals (honestly – a lot of people in the church still say this. There’s a reason Pat Robertson and Fox News are really popular). We, as Christians, have much work ahead of us to break the “stereotype” those before us has created and exemplify the love of Christ through grace and forgiveness. I applaud you, Eugene, for not being one to pick up a stone, even when it feels so justified to do so with the second gal. I agree that she’s young and very ignorant and honestly, as a Korean American, she’s ranting about a lot of the same things that I rant about Asians. She just did it in a really rude, insensitive, unloving manner. She displayed exactly opposite of what Christ would display and so we need to make sure we don’t fall into the same footsteps. It’s easy to make her the villain but underneath it all, we need to remember that in some way, shape and form, we all carry these ignorant ideas around and we’re all working through them. She just chose to put it out on youtube – which makes her unwise and an easy target.

    • Rick Shaw says:

      Please list examples of where Fox news is NOT being trustworthy reporting the news and not because they have conservative talk shows. CNN has liberal talk show hosts but I don’t fault the news coverage because they have Anderson Cooper or others.

      I’m glad, at least around here, Vietnamese and Cambodians basically make up a block for conservative principles because there is too much of writers coming in and making such statements.

  9. I decided to take my frustrations and create something based on this notion:

    Is it possible we belittle Jesus’ death & His bearing all of God’s judgement when we say “God sent the earthquake to Japan”?

    If anyone needs shaking, it’s the Church to realize “creation is groaning” (Rom 8), not in judgement, but for the sons & daughters of God to finally be revealed. If God is love & we love God, then creation is waiting on us to be the greatest lovers of this world that this world has ever seen.

    The output of what I created tonight can be found below. Love to get any feedback you all might have.

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=634434&id=735340067

    Lovingly,

    Joel
    @revolt
    @revoltcollectiv
    @prayerasprotest

  10. Sejin says:

    Others have commented saying that the first video is a fluke so I will not comment.

    As for the second video, I agree that everyone should learn manners inside and outside the library. However, this does not call for ignorant and racial comments.

    I’m glad that UCLA took action and told her to apologize.

    UC L.ord A.lmighty. (it’s a stretch)

  11. T.B. says:

    These videos are not worthshowing. Don’t promote them. If anyone believes that these people on the videoes can influence our personal beliefs on Asians and Atheists, then those people can not be taught the truth about life, humility, forgiveness, and what it truly means to be a Christian. We can’t waste our time with these people. Not everyone will be able to understand. Teach only those that are willing.

  12. John says:

    Others who have watched her other videos on her youtube page have made the point that she appears to be a troll, which is someone who intentionally misrepresents themselves and then they say outrageous things in order to provoke fights. It’s very common on political blogs. But she’s “good enough” to appear to be sincere. Good acting. Horrible morals either way.

  13. Garrett S. says:

    My first reaction was to slug her in the face.

    I can’t stand trolls. They’re the best argument for “total depravity,” today.

  14. […] as being glorified in the death of human beings, and thirsting for more blood on American shores. Eugene Cho & Christian Salafia both linked to a video about a fellow “believer” who is […]

  15. Erick says:

    This post got me thinking about a situation that happened at a Christian University in the Twin Cities last year…

    A white male student got up on stage for the talent show impersonating Kanye West (I think it was Kanye), in black face.

    Obviously, a handful of students were outraged but only a handful. So, faculty took a poll throughout the University asking students to voice/pen their reactions to what happened. They were given the freedom to say if and how greatly offended they were by this incident. Surprisingly, many-don’t know how many exactly- were not offended, or too offended. Even more heartbreaking.

    But, here’s the beauty. The faculty decided to do something. The reality they saw was a large population of young adults lacking proper cultural, historical, ethical training. So, they have now incorporated better and deeper diversity education within the University and created programs within this realm to better educate the students (and received a grant to do so). It’s too bad that it took until the college level for many young students to start having conversations about racial, ethnic and cultural diversity…but at least the University is being intentional about it. Props.

  16. DK says:

    read this just now and it’s crazy how I wrote essentially the same things. i think this is a chance for some major constructive work to be done…

  17. Rick Shaw says:

    She’s asking for trouble doing such, it’s to get attention but she received threats. I am reading they have caught one of the Union/Left Wingers that sent death threats in Wisconsin to politicians. Everything needs a civil discussion.

  18. I hope that instead of labeling her as something we allow for her to make a mistake. Even if she never admitted to it begin a mistake, I hope that we can forgive anyways.

  19. have you seen this response yet? it’s brilliant, not mean. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F84NWh8Uzok

  20. Mouse says:

    I don’t condone racism in any shape or form, but nor do I condone the response that has degenerated into what is basically cyberbullying and a general mob mentality. Yes, she chose a very public platform to air her unenlightened thoughts and yes she needed to be called out on her comments, but let the punishment fit the crime. A lot of the response Ive seen is far more racist (and sexist) in my opinion than her original rant. Frankly, there’s far more despicable, hateful and cruel content floating around Youtube that should be called out on, but seems to get a free pass. (and yes, I’m Asian, btw)

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One Day’s Wages

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As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

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