- People are sharing how serving in the military has ruined their lives with #WhyIServe Sunday 5:31 PM
- Gillette ad showing a dad teaching his trans son how to shave has the internet in tears Sunday 4:34 PM
- 4chan’s new troll campaign aims to make the hashtag a white supremacist symbol Sunday 2:49 PM
- Here’s what that ‘cliff wife’ meme is all about Sunday 12:58 PM
- Artist suspended from Facebook, Instagram after posting anti-MAGA artwork Sunday 12:04 PM
- How to watch Serie A online for free Sunday 7:30 AM
- What does ‘uwu’ mean? Sunday 7:00 AM
- How to uninstall the Epic Games Launcher (for real) Sunday 6:30 AM
- How to watch the Indianapolis 500 online for free Sunday 6:00 AM
- Ohio KKK rally met with massive counter-protest and witty signs from local businesses Saturday 5:06 PM
- Guy who said he stole drugs from MS-13 now says viral story is fake Saturday 4:07 PM
- Financial service company left 885 million private records exposed online Saturday 3:13 PM
- Sasha Obama went to prom and Twitter is delighted with the photos Saturday 2:22 PM
- Jon Voight says Trump is the greatest president since Lincoln in Twitter videos Saturday 1:31 PM
- #DeleteFacebook gains momentum after the platform refused to remove doctored Nancy Pelosi videos Saturday 11:58 AM
Kelly Marie Tran addresses online harassment: ‘I won’t be marginalized’
For the first time since she quit Instagram in June, Star Wars actress Kelly Marie Tran has spoken out about her experiences with online harassment. In an eloquent article published by the New York Times, she wrote about the lifelong impact of racism as the child of Vietnamese immigrants in America, and how The Last Jedi backlash led her to come back stronger than ever.
“It wasn’t their words, it’s that I started to believe them,” wrote Tran. When racist Star Wars fans started harassing her online, it brought back memories of how her Vietnamese heritage inspired bullying and disrespect when she was younger. She writes about how her family adopted American names to blend in, and how she internalized the racist messages she heard in daily life.
“I had been brainwashed into believing that my existence was limited to the boundaries of another person’s approval. I had been tricked into thinking that my body was not my own, that I was only beautiful if someone else believed it, regardless of my own opinion. I had been told and retold this by everyone: by the media, by Hollywood, by companies that profited from my insecurities, manipulating me so that I would buy their clothes, their makeup, their shoes, in order to fill a void that was perpetuated by them in the first place.”
As an actress, Tran is particularly conscious of how pop culture represents Asian people in America. She writes about how TV and movies taught her that she “only existed in the background of their stories, doing their nails, diagnosing their illnesses, supporting their love interests—and perhaps the most damaging—waiting for them to rescue me.”
But despite the harassment that drove her off social media, Tran is aware of her impact as a role model in Star Wars. She knows how important Rose Tico is to a generation of fans, and she’s aware of her growing power as an Asian American star in Hollywood.
“I am the first woman of color to have a leading role in a Star Wars movie,” she writes. “My real name is Loan. And I am just getting started.” Instead of being driven away by harassment, she’s returning with a newfound determination.
H/T to The New York Times
Gavia Baker-Whitelaw is a staff writer at the Daily Dot, covering geek culture and fandom. Specializing in sci-fi movies and superheroes, she also appears as a film and TV critic on BBC radio. Elsewhere, she co-hosts the pop culture podcast Overinvested. Follow her on Twitter: @Hello_Tailor