The Marmot's Hole dug this up, a cartoon some Korean blogger made of good-for-nothing foreign English teachers who get their drink on and their smoke on, and invariably go home with something to poke on (though the cartoonist didn't depict that).
Um, in a country where 73% of Korean men drink alcohol every day, and where 40% of adult males smoke cigarettes (an generously low estimate down from 72% in 1994). The World Health Organization estimated that a decade ago 43% of male physicians smoked, and yes I know the cartoon is probably refering to marijuana and yes I know ten years is a long time but I'm not going to let that stop me. I never got that angle of attack, and never understood the stereotype of foreign teachers teaching drunk or high. I'm sure it happens once in a blue moon, but not enough to warrant comment. They'd be better off getting us for not shaving, for dressing like slobs, and for smelling bad. Anyway, and I'm going to trot out my old stand-by, I'll bet if you counted all the foreigners busted over the years for drugs, for alcohol abuse, for violence, and for illegal teaching, they'd still total much less than the 800 men who raped a middle school girl held captive in Gwangju.
Tangentially related, it looks like that, regardless of the spin job done by the Korea Times earlier this month, the "Citizens' Association for Lawful English Education" lets its true colors show through on their Korean-language cafe. Known in a previous incarnation as the "Anti-English Spectrum Cafe," and oblivious to the existence of structural ambiguity in my language, Korea Beat has translated their "statement of purpose," and here's an excerpt:
We gather here to do two things for that journey.
Anger at the arrogant English Spectrum, alive and well as ever despite criticism for its debasement of Korean women, and the expulsion of illegal, low-quality English instructors.
The small but powerful country, the Republic of Korea!
We are Anti-English Spectrum, fighting for justice for a land whose heart is not yet shriveled up.
Our work holds meaning for our country and our society. We do it together!
This is the citizens’ movement for the expulsion of illegal foreign language teachers.
Yeah, for some reason the use of alcohol correlates to a person's visa status, and by having consensual sex rather than paying for it like everyone else we somehow invalidate our credentials. Anyway, their invitation to go fuck themselves still stands.
Edit: This comes a couple of hours after my original post---as my students are having an earthquake drill by hiding under their desks---but I just wanted to add that I liked Matt's comment on the Korea Beat post:
Let’s see, a group that wants to preserve the purity of the race by eliminating foreigners…I think we have a group like that back home. They’re called the KKK. What, exactly, makes these “patriots” any different from the KKK? I see two sides of the same coin.
I'm not equating online harassment with lynchings and cross-burnings, but remember that the organization admitted to stalking foreigners in that Korea Times piece, and remember the violent outburts that took place in 2005, and an analogy not that off-base.