I want you to imagine for a minute...
The typical Japanese Citizen.
The typical citizen of Nigeria.
The typical citizen of Pakistan.
The typical Indian citizen.
The typical Iraqi citizen.
The typical Mexican citizen.
The typical German citizen.
Or the typical citizen of China.
Now I want you to imagine the typical citizen of the USA, born and raised. In case you don't quite catch what I'm trying to get you guys to think about, I brought up a rainbow of nationalities (or at least tried), to sort of give you a black and white picture of what to think about the various skin colors, mother tongues, and cultural backgrounds. Now I'm going to try and break this black and white idealogy.
In America, it seems most everyone who was at least born here can speak English, regardless of skin color. It may or may not go coupled with their mother tongue, but every now and then it seems we give our minorities crap. Whether it be tasteless jokes, profiling, or anything in between. I'll come back to that later.
Globalization is the simple thought process that we have countries becoming increasingly intertwined, which, with the advent of the 21st century, should come as less and less surprising because of transatlantic and transpacific flights. I have been to seven different countries within my lifetime, and after my last venture abroad, I am telling you that nothing would surprise me anymore. Which brings me to this point...
America, Canada, as well as many members of the EU, are not the only countries that exist which have "green cards" to give to their netizens. China has green cards (which are extremely difficult to get), so does Korea (which, at the time I last researched, is about as difficult to get as China), and so does Japan (but you have to be REALLY willing to become Japanese to get one, not quite as difficult as China or Korea), and so does Taiwan (fairly easy for Americans, Aussies, New Zealanders, and Europeans), and Singapore (painfully easy, but work is difficult to find). I am recalling all of these green card requirements off the top of my head, so please forgive me if any of this is inconsistent with your own personal research or experience. Continuing on...
I knew that before I went to Taiwan I was going to find foreigners that had Taiwanese citizenship, no doubt in my mind. But I was originally thinking that it would mostly be people from lesser developed countries, like Thailand, The Philippines, or Indonesia, or if I ran in to a foreigner from a more developed country with Taiwanese citizenship, I was thinking it would be an American / Canadian / EU member national that was looking to retire in Taiwan. However, there was a very big exception to that rule and I found it. I discovered that a few Taiwanese families like to adopt children and raise them themselves, which is quite converse to that of the mainland Chinese ideology, and furthermore for the communists, almost impossible to accommodate in their current legal situations with immigration customs and Chinese Nationality Laws. So, now and then I ran across foreigners from America, and some from Niger, that were adopted as young children and raised in Taiwan. They are Taiwanese citizens. I can only imagine the amount of discrimination or profiling they faced growing up. Because, honestly, even though Taiwan is a globalized place, I feel that the majority ethnicity is Han Chinese or Taiwanese aborigines. And because these foreign-born people are Taiwanese nationals, but they are not ethnically Chinese, I would not be surprised to see that they faced discrimination or profiling. Possibly the one thing that is most unexpected from all of this is, I remember hearing some of them spoke better Chinese than their mother tongue.
I remember some oh-so-slight profiling I faced when I was in Taiwan. I remember I was at a 7-11 waiting for my food to heat up in the microwave, and I just remarked to this guy that was shopping, "我從來沒看到蘋果牛奶“ ("I've never seen apple milk before.") and his girlfriend just flipped out and said, "哇！你會講國語嗎？！" (”Whoa, you can speak Chinese?!"). The irony of this is, the place where I bought my lunch was less than one mile from National Taiwan University, which is basically like Harvard or Yale for Taiwan.
California is probably the biggest rainbow of American blended ethnicities in the U.S.A. Probably the prime example of America being a "melting pot." Many modern Chinese in California are descended from the generations that built the railroad system almost one hundred years ago. Many of them are third or fourth generation Americans but speak no Chinese what so ever, and as such they are as American as anyone else in this country. However, the onset of globalization has yet to take full effect and I think we will see this happen more and more in the next century...
EDIT: People give me shit everywhere for speaking Chinese. Both in strides like, "Oh dude, that white guy speaks Chinese." and in tones like "Fuckin' nerd." from inbred white trash that seek simply to disturb my peace. Honestly, the latter doesn't bother me that much because I'm making more progress in life than they are. However, modern Asian immigrants face the stereotypical, "This guy doesn't speak English well, how the hell is he working for us?" tone, or the condescending, "You speak English very well." from monolinguals who really don't understand what it is like to encounter language difficulties and just say it as a form of passage or course of routine when dealing with non-Americans in America. Typically, people just dismiss it and move on. But when a white guy speaks Chinese, everybody stares and everybody asks questions, regardless. The funny thing is the conversations I've had with people who don't speak Chinese at all:
"Wow, you speak that language fluently?"
"That language you were just speaking."
"Oh, you mean English?"
"No, that other one."
"What other one? Do you even know what it's called?"
"Then how do you know I speak it fluently?"
But if someone just happens to guess correctly, the conversation might go like this...
"Wow, it sounds like you speak Chinese fluently!"
"Wait, how do you know? Do you speak Chinese?"
"Then how do you know? Because I work at a restaurant?"
The most annoying thing on Earth is, by God, the idiots who talk to me in English while I'm having a conversation in Chinese with someone else. This results in me not being to process either conversation that either person is trying to have with me.
Most of the time I just ignore the questions, "Where'd you learn to speak Chinese?", ”Where'd you learn to speak that language?", and this is probably the token dumbest question I have gotten before, from a fat redneck in his 40s, "Where'd you learn to speak Oriental?" After a while I would just hear the word "Where" and then I wouldn't even bother turning my head to the person who was talking to me. I only speak Mandarin if I know a coworker or friend's English is deficient, or if I'm casting some games on the Taiwanese server.
Honestly, I just got sick of being noticed, and blindly praised for it. It is racist, or you could call it the double-standard. However, conversely, above, I have stated that I like to cast games in Chinese. Some of you are probably thinking, "Isn't that hypocritical?" that would be considered "selling his minority", he just said he hates getting blindly praised by people who donno wtf they're talking about. The truth is, it might just bother me a little bit, but not to the extent that what I get now does. I wouldn't mind walking down the streets of Zhongxiao Dunhua in Taipei and having a random passerby notice me as "Breaker" or "Enders" because of the accomplishments that I made in my lifetime with Starcraft. Doing something original that no foreigner in Taiwan or China has done before: being good at casting competitive SC2 games in Chinese. How many white guys have done that? Meh, a guy can dream.
That was a whole other rant.
TL;DR Version: Skin color, citizenship, and mother-tongue have virtually no connection anymore.