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Riverdale's Charles Melton regrets "suppressing my Asian identity": "I’ve realized that I never stood up for my Korean heritage"

  • In a column for Variety in response to the wave of anti-Asian hate crimes, Melton looked back at his identity as the son of a white U.S. Army veteran father and Korean mother. "I’ve often been told that I’m not Asian enough. Not white enough. And I question whether I am enough at all," he writes. "I am conflicted by my racial identities and the trauma that comes with that. In light of the recent horrors, I am compelled to share my story." Melton adds: "With the continued rise in horrific hate crimes towards my community, I have been in deep introspection by recalling my own experiences, unpacking my past, and trying to understand it all. Through it, I’ve realized that I never stood up for my Korean heritage. I’ve willfully ignored the racism and microaggressions directed towards me and my people. I failed to defend my heritage in fear of retribution. And now I can’t help but wonder what I did to contribute to the violence against Asian Americans. What did I do to perpetuate these cruel stereotypes? Could I have done more for my community? Could I have spoken out more? What was I afraid of? Today, that all changes. I will no longer remain silent about my lived experience. The hate crimes that have swept the country have forced me to realize how important the platform I have is and the responsibility that comes with it. Domestic terrorism and hate-driven violence have plagued our nation and continue to do so. What’s clear in all of this is the rampant violence against Asian people."

    TOPICS: Charles Melton, Asian Americans and TV, Atlanta Spa Massacre