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Jeremy Lin Says Racial Slurs Were Far Worse in College Than in the NBA
The biggest takeaway Lin offered during the interview was his recollection that the racial taunts by fans were far worse in college than they were in the NBA, explaining the students, despite being Ivy League, were still all young and drunk. He recalled one specific instance at Cornell:
The worst was at Cornell, when I was being called a “chink.” That’s when it happened.
I ended up playing terrible and getting a couple of charges and doing real out-of-character stuff … I didn’t say anything because when that stuff happens, I kind of just, I go and bottle up where I go into turtle mode and don’t say anything and just internalize everything.
He says that while things are better in the NBA, and he’s not interested in going back to the hostile college atmosphere, he wears his experiences there like a badge of honor, stating the following:
And now when I say badge of honor, it’s like, this is cool, I rep for all the Asians, I rep for all the Harvard dudes, I rep for the Cali guys, I rep for the underdogs. I take pride in it. It is not a burden to me anymore. I am not scared anymore. I appreciate it and want to help and challenge the world, stereotypes and everything. Back then, I didn’t understand it; and it came so fast, I didn’t really know what was going on.