is LA the best place for Asian-American professional males? (Los Angeles: luxury, schools)
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is LA the best place for Asian-American professional males?
okay, so im based out of NY (now Upper East), love it here (originally from overseas however).
I come to LA every now and then for some R&R and work and have to say that I feel generally "more accepted" and shown respect as an Asian male when in LA.
Now that's a HUGE generalization and of course there are many exceptions but I feel that the social climate for Asian males in greater LA is more accepting than most east coast cities (Boston, NY, DC, NJ, FL) as I've had to travel to said locales for work..
is this just in my head or does anyone else feel this?
is this due to just a large representation of Asians in LA and California due to it's closeness to Asia and ease of migration. Look forward to others' takes. Thanks.
It goes back to birds of the same feather flock together.
I fall into your group, grew up on the East Coast and went to both undergrad and grad school back East but ended up in California for similar reasons as you (2nd generation though - so that does make a difference).
The Asian representation is way larger than in California then anywhere else. For instance NYC (and we can include Flushing) and SF have their Chinatown, but that doesn't compare to what you have in LA. In addition to Chinatown in downtown LA, if you head to the San Gabriel Valley (a whole collection of cities), it's like being in Taiwan and HK (where there's more chinese than english everywhere).
Now back to your original question is LA the "best" place for Asian-American Professionals. That really depends on your profession. Definitely if you're looking to open an Asian trading company than would say being in LA would be helpful.
Professional-wise I would say it depends what you want to do: function/industry. But as far as being "comfortable" I would say CA wins (at least for me). I grew up where there were only 16 Asians in a school of 3K (and you know how "nice" kids can be - so always felt a little bit of an outsider) and now I live where I'm in the majority (at first it felt almost weird "reverse culture shock" if you will) - go figure!
Even going to college you see the difference, both my sisters went to schools in the west coast and I went east coast. They came away with a much stronger Asian identity from their college experience than I even did.
But if you're feeling that you're being "held" back -- there's an interesting book called the "bamboo ceiling" you should check out -- I think where you feel most comfortable (both in work and life) is where you'll be happy and succeed the most.
Naturally I have lots of Asian friends that are in the northeast and would never come out here, and they are happy and successful in their lives.
Yeah Los Angeles or San Francisco is the best place for a professional Asian male.
I'm a dual citizen American/Canadian and if I didn't live in Vancouver (best place for Asians in Canada) then I'd move to L.A. or Frisco. I grew up in L.A. as well in Long Beach and even then all my friends were Cambodian or Korean.
LA and Orange county have a huge Asian populations, I think it comes down to California (or the West in general) being the new "gateway to America".
Anyhow, California has a hybrid culture. California "grew up" with American, Hispanic and Asian influence while the East Coast was largely founded by Europeans. As a result some aspects of Asian culture are more ingrained in mainstream culture in California than they are in other areas.
OP, you're not alone in your thinking - there are many asian american men who would largely agree with your observations, and much of it has to do with the community's larger and more longstanding presence in california compared with other parts of the country.
it's no coincidence that the two regions of the mainland u.s. with the most asian representation by total numbers (LA area) and by percentage (SF bay area) happen to be the best places to live for east asian and southeast asian males.
and although the bay area has a larger percentage, i'd still give LA/OC the edge as an asian mecca due to a greater variety and a much higher absolute number of asians, including the largest u.s. population of numerous ethnicities: koreans, taiwanese, mainland chinese, vietnamese, japanese, thais, cambodians, indonesians, etc. even filipinos, who have a massive presence in the bay area, are represented in LA in greater absolute numbers. the only east/southeast asian group which i think has a larger population in the bay area are cantonese chinese, but their LA-area presence is still enormous.
outside of the west coast, the nyc area is the nation's top spot for asian males, but to me there is a major dropoff in terms of acceptance and comfort level compared with california. the d.c. area represents a half step down from nyc and then chicago, houston, dallas, philly, boston, and atlanta are another half step down beyond that.
i was born in nyc and spent most of my life in the area. i've heard some people say that it's the most diverse and cosmopolitan region in the nation (and therefore the most open-minded), but i would disagree - i think LA is arguably more diverse and definitely more progressive and integrated, especially with regard to asian males.
when i was a kid in the '80s and early '90s, my family and many of our local asian friends were subjected to quite a bit of prejudice. back then, the discrimination was much more overt than it is today. since then, things have improved considerably, but there are still plenty of subtle but insidious slights that really make you feel disrespected, as if you don't matter as much as the nyc region's more entrenched groups. a lot of us feel there's more of a racial hierarchy in place on the east coast, which i guess is not surprising since the east is more rooted in tradition and european cultural/political dominance.
by contrast, asians have more of a historic presence on the west coast and are more ingrained into the local mainstream culture, so i think non-asians are more used to us. that doesn't mean that anti-asian prejudice doesn't exist, but i think in general people are more tolerant (or at least less likely to give a hoot) because there's less of a culture clash compared with other regions of the country which are still coming to terms with their changing demographics, and are more likely to look at any asian as an perpetual foreigner, even if they're totally americanized.
remember, almost every asian trend (usually related to food) that eventually became popular in large cities throughout the nation originated on the west coast, especially southern california. sushi/california rolls first became big in california. same with pad thai, dim sum, kalbi, pho, boba, and so forth. california is at the nation's leading edge when it comes to importing trends and ideas from asia and then exporting them to other parts of the country. this is made possible not only by local demographics, but also a history of greater tolerance and mainstream acceptance.
Highest-income professionals anywhere tend not to be very "ethnic", whether they are Jewish or Indian or Chinese or random white/brown/yellow guys from Midwest or TX
LA has a relatively small base of professionals vs PaloAlto or NYC, as LA region has puny finance and tech industries
Places with highest concentrations of engineers and financiers tend to see socializing along business lines, not racial/religious lines...and many yuppies in these small towns like PaloAlto/MidtownManhattan know each other from having attended (and competed in) the same, small world of Stanford or Harvard and/or having started their careers together at Google or Goldman
LOL no matter the topic at hand, hsw always finds a way to work in his usual spiel about the interests and lifestyles of super high income professionals.
dude, the OP isn't asking where he can make the most money. he's talking about LA as a comfortable place for asian men to live due to social and cultural factors. believe it or not, there are many of us who are ok with the fact that our lives don't revolve around hedge funds, ivy league alumni networks, fortune 500 companies, and a luxury lifestyle in silicon valley, the westside of LA, midtown/downtown manhattan, or greenwich, ct. some of us are ok with the fact that we live in non-glamorous areas riding mass transit alongside average joes.
I'd like to know what kind of stuff you guys are smoking because it must be some damn good stuff LMAO....
Believe me, it's ALL in your head. In NO ****IN WAY is LA (or SoCal) the best place, not even close! Albeit it probably is a little better than Northeast, I'll give you that LMAO
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