Making It In America: From Bullied, Gay Boy to High-Flying Fashion Designer

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    Making It In America: From Bullied, Gay Boy to High-Flying Fashion Designer


    Kiger Hansen is a successful New York City fashion designer with his own clothing website. But he wasn’t always this way.

    By this way, I mean feeling safe and comfortable in his own skin.

    You see, Kiger Hansen is a rare example of what I would call a ‘triple-whammy effect’ for an immigrant. Race, nationality and sexual orientation all played a huge role in Hansen’s childhood and early American experience. And, all three made it excruciatingly difficult, bordering on impossible.

    But as with Americans and many of the immigrants who come here honestly seeking a better life through hard work, nothing ever turns out to be impossible.

    Born in the American military hospital in Busan, South Korea to a Korean mother and American father, Hansen started life incomplete. “I never knew my real father as everyone has kept the information from me, including my Mom,” Hansen told me wistfully, “I was hoping my Mom would tell me some day, but she passed unexpectedly in 2009.”


    “She was beautiful, stylish and second eldest daughter of eight. She was a single mother and fell in love with my stepfather, an American military solder, who was stationed in Korea at the time.”

    At age seven with his mother and new stepfather, Hansen moved to the Fort Riley, Kansas, Army base to begin a new life. And this new life didn’t begin in a big city (where he might be lost in a sea of others), but the smallest of towns, Junction City, Kansas. “It’s a small, little city,” Hansen told me ominously, “when you pass by it on the highway, it’s tiny and easy to miss.”

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  • I’m happy to see more Asian/Asian-American fashion designers. The reason being that women tend to gravitate towards what’s fashionable or trendy and a lot of Asian girls simply love Europe and everything it stands for because of it’s “high end” fashion industry. So the more Asian fashion designers there are, the better status-wise Asian women view the community as a whole. It’s sad how materialistic and shallow that may sound but unfortunately, knowing a lot of women, that’s how many seem to work.

    A few notable Asian/Asian-American fashion designers that are extremely popular, even among white women, are Alexander Wang, Jimmy Choo, Yohji Yamamoto, and Kenzo Takada just to name a few off the top of my head. A few years ago, I remembered going into a high end store (back in California) where I stumbled upon a dress that had a lot of sequins, pearls and what not and it was designed by an Asian designer (I can’t remember the name exactly, it was either Takada or Takashi Nishiyama) but when I looked at the price tag, I nearly had a heart attack. The thing was about $13,000! Don’t get me wrong, I’m completely happy that our fashion designers are doing so well for themselves but damn…$13,000. I could buy another car with that.

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    @bugoutfever You know I can’t let this go without putting in some history…

    The following book debunks the lie that North Korea started this war. It was the American imperialists along with their SK lapdogs.


    Some 25% Koreans died in this war started by America and then they show you propaganda like this.



    Regarding these American “soldiers” in South Korea…

    During the Korean War in South Korea

    mixed-race orphans, the children of foreign servicemen and Korean women…Most of these children were born after the war, and they were abandoned by nearly everyone: by their fathers, who rarely remained in Korea

    The Forsaken: Portraits of Mixed-Race Orphans in Postwar Korea | TIME


    After the Korean War / present day South Korea…

    …women often “try to get out of the clubs” by finding a GI….But “practically 90 percent of the women are abandoned,”
    Many get pregnant and have babies. Some get married, and then the soldier disappears without a word when his tour
    is done in South Korea, leaving the woman in financial and legal trouble.
    Having left their clubs, many women are suddenly without a sponsor required to live in Korea. Sometimes they are stuck in legal limbo without an official divorce, and some can’t claim child support. In other cases, Youngnim said, the men get the women to sign documents they don’t understand, and these turn out to be divorce papers that leave them with nothing.
    Since the 1970s, GIs have also been involved in sham marriages used to bring Korean women to the United States to perform sex work in Korean massage parlors. Korean divorcées from legitimate marriages have also been vulnerable to recruitment into the parlors. In fact, researchers and law enforcement officers suggest that most Korean women working in U.S. massage parlors were once married to GIs. There have been more than half a million marriages between Asian women and male GIs since World War II; an estimated 80 percent end in divorce.

    My Body Was Not Mine, but the U.S. Military’s’


    But it wasn’t just in Korea…

    extensive and once notorious legacy of the rape, trafficking and forced sexual exploitation of women of color – and of Asian women in particular – by American soldiers abroad. For nearly half of the 20th century (from roughly 1939 to 1980), America maintained an enormous military presence throughout the Pacific Rim,
    American culture has added insult to this widespread injury by not only failing to chastise American men for this behavior, but celebrating it as suggestive of American virility and perpetuating the meme of the exotic, sexually permissive Asian woman in pop culture. From Miss Saigon to Memoirs of a Geisha to Lucy Liu dressed as a masseuse in Charlie’s Angels, Asian women are rarely represented as having any agency or choice.
    It’s as though they spent 40 years raping us and the last 30 talking about how much we enjoyed it.
    This particular form of racism has myriad consequences for Asian American women. A significant amount of the attention we receive from non Asian men is in the form of creepy, excessive enthusiasm.
    The American feminist narrative focuses a lot on so called rape culture. What it almost never bothers to mention, however, is that it is Asian women at whom this culture is most blatantly and directly aimed.

    Asian Women, American GIs, and Modern Rape Culture | Persephone Magazine:

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