Twitter Reacts to Ed Case Being an “Asian Trapped in a White Body”

Ed Case
Case is a returning member of the executive committee of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.
PHOTO: Wikimedia Commons

Ed Case’s statement would probably have elicited groans, eyerolls and a news ripple in a local setting. But when he told a Washington, D.C. audience that he has been called an “Asian trapped in a white body,” the national audience was not amused.


The representative was at a meeting of Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote, held to celebrate significant advances in the number of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Congress on Tuesday. Nicholas Wu, a fellow for the National Journal (with just 760 followers on Twitter, by the way) posted the quote. 


In response to requests about the social media dust-up that followed the remark, Case said he was referring to “what his Japanese-American wife sometimes says about him.” 


“I am fiercely proud of representing the state with the highest percentage of many ethnic groups in our country including Asian and Pacific Islanders, a state where no ethnic group has been in the majority for generations. Like so many others from Hawai‘i who treasure our multicultural heritage, I have absorbed and live the values of our many cultures.”


Case said he was pointing proudly to Hawai‘i’s diversity: “I regret if my specific remarks to the national API community on my full absorption of their concerns caused any offense.”


 Wu first announced the comment:



Much of the Mainland reaction compared the comment to white actors playing Asian characters:





Some responses were snarky:






While others pointed out the comment isnʻt deemed so outrageous in Hawai‘i:




Others were just playful: