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In this Article, Professor Chang analyzes the historic role of family in the politics of exclusion in the United States, evaluates the ways in which the stereotyping of Asian Americans as a model minority has perpetuated these politics, and warns against the possibility of a similar fate for gay and lesbian Americans. As a model minority, Asian Americans have been set as a standard against which other minority groups, particularly African Americans, are measured. Around the same time Asians were being extolled for their hard work and family values, Congress released the Moynihan report on the problem of broken families in the African American community. Whereas Asians were thought of as similar to the white mainstream in their family values, African Americans were deemed widely opposite. This Article analyzes how Obergefell employs a similar rhetoric of comparison and considers the dangers of the gay community turning into a new model minority. As Chris Lijima notes, "the very notion of an 'honorary white' serves to further codify the notion of white supremacy since 'it promotes whiteness as an ideal." This Article argues that the construction of Asian Americans, and now gay Americans, as sexual model minorities promotes the supremacy of normative family in American culture as a means of disciplining nonconforming minority groups

Publication Citation

23 Asian Am. L.J. 5 (2016).