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Tue Feb 22, 2022, 11:45 AM

Like Eileen Gu, People With Mixed Roots Are Tired of Being Told to Pick a Side

For China’s star athlete Eileen Gu, “either-or” isn’t in her vocabulary.

Born to a Chinese mother and American father, the 18-year-old skier grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area while straddling the Pacific. While in the U.S., she took piano, surfing, and skiing lessons. Come summer, she’d travel to Beijing to study for the Mathematical Olympiad and the SAT.

Years later, she’d find herself in the same city representing China at the Winter Olympics and at the center of a debate over her nationality and identity. “When I’m in the U.S., I’m American, but when I’m in China, I’m Chinese,” she has often said.

Gu’s evident rejection of identifying with only one nation has angered some critics. Though the Olympian has so far deflected questions about her dual citizenship—which is not recognized in Chinese law—conservative outlets have called her a “traitor” to the United States. In an interview last week, ex-UN ambassador Nikki Haley urged the skier to pick a side. “You’re standing for freedom or you’re standing for human rights abuses. There is no in-between,” the former Trump appointee said.

The badgering Gu has faced about her citizenship is a shared sentiment for many who don’t fit into a binary.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/7kb7ye/eileen-gu-olympics-dual-nationality-china-us
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Of course Nimrata Randhawa is on the other side, pretty much ignoring her ancestry if not outright denying it

15 replies, 809 views

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Arrow 15 replies Author Time Post
Reply Like Eileen Gu, People With Mixed Roots Are Tired of Being Told to Pick a Side (Original post)
Jilly_in_VA Feb 2022 OP
PoliticAverse Feb 2022 #1
Celerity Feb 2022 #2
lark Feb 2022 #4
Cracklin Charlie Feb 2022 #3
HUAJIAO Feb 2022 #5
Mariana Feb 2022 #6
Sympthsical Feb 2022 #7
iemanja Feb 2022 #9
Sympthsical Feb 2022 #11
iemanja Feb 2022 #12
Sympthsical Feb 2022 #13
empedocles Feb 2022 #15
iemanja Feb 2022 #8
Jilly_in_VA Feb 2022 #10
RobinA Feb 2022 #14

Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 11:50 AM

1. I wonder what the reaction would be if she were Russian-American and chose to compete for Russia. nt

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 11:53 AM

2. burnt at the stake

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 11:56 AM

4. She would have the right to do this.

I wouldn't cheer for her because she was representing an aggressive right wing authoritarian nation, but I would support her right to compete for whichever country she chose.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 11:55 AM

3. Eff Nimrata.

Eileen has been very upfront about why she competed for China. She wants to grow the sport. To add interest and accessibility for kids around the world.

She will do that.

Nimrata, on the other hand…all about exclusion. Eileen has already surpassed any impact Nikki will ever have on anything.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:01 PM

5. For people who criticize and bully Gu, and others in her position,

it is none of your fucking business. Go home.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:02 PM

6. "... her dual citizenship--which is not recognized in Chinese law..."

It is completely irrelevant whether her dual citizenship is "recognized by Chinese law". China doesn't get to decide who can be a US citizen, that is governed by US law alone. The US doesn't get to decide who can be a citizen of China, that is governed by Chinese law alone. She does not have to choose one or the other.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:07 PM

7. Bill Maher touched on this

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Response to Sympthsical (Reply #7)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:11 PM

9. Would she have cared if she weren't "hot"?

Plenty of other Americans chose to represent other countries.

Maher is such a pig.

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Response to iemanja (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:14 PM

11. His point wasn't about her

It was about China and how celebrities and companies approach it out of monetary motivations.

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Response to Sympthsical (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:16 PM

12. The segment focused on her

with her picture, and he emphasized that "hot" freestyle skiers shouldn't be allowed to represent China.

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Response to iemanja (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:26 PM

13. And that's what you're taking away from all that

Ok then.

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Response to Sympthsical (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:54 PM

15. $31.4 million seems relevant

'Even before she took home her first gold medal at the Winter Olympics, freestyle skier Eileen Gu racked up a fortune. The 18-year-old’s 2021 earnings are estimated to be over $31.4 million, according to market research firm CBNData (link in Chinese), putting her among the world’s top earning female athletes.
How Eileen Gu became a darling of global and Chinese brands
www.msn.com/en-US/news/winter-olympics/how-eileen-gu-became-a-darling-of-global-and-chinese-brands/ar-AATQSz2
www.msn.com/en-US/news/winter-olympics/how-eileen-gu-became-a-darling-of … '

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:09 PM

8. She literally picked a side.

It's just not the side many Americans would have liked her to choose.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:12 PM

10. My great-niece

(and soon there will be two of them!) has dual citizenship--US and Ukrainian. She was born in Ukraine to a Ukrainian mother and an American father. Her sister will be too, unless they are forced to remain in exile elsewhere in Europe and she's born there, in which case she may have triple citizenship! However, nobody will question them if they would decide to compete for the country they were born in, because they don't "look different". They're white. Is it only the multiracial athletes who get questioned, the ones who look "different", the ones who are darker, or the ones who decide to compete for countries we perceive to be our "enemies"? Riddle me that.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Tue Feb 22, 2022, 12:49 PM

14. Maybe I'm Dense

but as a 100% American of Northern European descent, I find this brouhaha curious. To me, if you can legally participate for more than one nation you are pretty lucky and you can compete for who you want, no questions asked. I simply don’t get the controversy.

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