In honor of this day of remembrance: April 17, 1975
Is the change I seek revolutionary? Is every revolution going to require bloodshed? When “The Revolution” comes will I be able to take my mother and father with me? And what about my children? The Revolution did come to us. On April 17, 1975 the revolution marched into Phnom Penh. It emptied out the city. Nearly every single family in Cambodia suffered losses during the time of the Khmer Rouge. An estimated 2 million Cambodians died. There is no exact body count.
I was too young to be recruited as a child soldier. In 1975, The People’s Revolutionary Party instead enlisted me in the fields where I would pick up cow dung. The unrelenting sun scorched my hair a shiny amber.1978 my mother almost died giving birth to my brother. There were no doctors or nurses in their commune. Professionals, intellectuals, former government officials, and religious figures were targeted for torture and execution. Kindness spared my father who would have otherwise been executed for being a teacher and a Muslim. The oppressive Khmer Rouge regime lasted 3 years, 8 months and 20 days. In 1979 when the borders reopened, my family was forced to leave Cambodia for the nearest Thai refugee camp. Survival is an instinct the body remembers well. On June 30, 1979, my family left the Thai camps for America. I do not need to have memories of violence to know that the experience of genocide has never left my body.
My parents never left me behind even when the Revolution left us with nothing. The change I seek has to include my family even if their politics differ from mine. The change I seek must be rooted in love. I believe that you can’t serve your people if you don’t love your people. Acts of violence can never be acts of love.”"
18 USC students are occupying the Bovard Auditorium to tell USC’s President to cut its relationship with Jansport, a brand whose parent company VF Corporation has killed 29 workers in Bangladesh and has since refused to take responsibility for the working conditions in its factories.
In their letter, the students write:
Dear President Nikias,
Students are occupying your office today because of USC’s refusal to take action by cutting its contract with JanSport, a brand whose parent company VF Corporation has killed 29 workers in Bangladesh and has since refused to take responsibility for the working conditions in its factories. Your own students have been campaigning for eight months to let you and your administration know that we are outraged about USC’s continued relationship with a company that has such an abysmal track record for worker safety.
We have yet to receive any sort of acknowledgment from you personally, President Nikias. From your lower administrators, we have been told that USC will not terminate its relationship with JanSport/VF despite the overwhelming evidence students have provided that they are a corporation that does not represent Trojan values.
As students, we are saddened that it has come to this. While we would prefer to work amicably with USC’s administration – however, your continued inaction on this issue has made that an impossibility.
President Nikias: the Student Coalition Against Labor Exploitation, the Sweat-Free ‘SC Coalition, and our broad base of student, faculty and community supporters will continue to fight until the University of Southern California cuts or pledges non-renewal of its contract, with JanSport, subsidiary of VF Corporation, over their human rights abuses in Bangladesh.
One last time, we have printed and attached for your reference the relevant information regarding this campaign and look forward to your prompt response.
The Student Coalition Against Labor Exploitation, USAS local #13
Call Nikias right now at (213) 740-2111 and demand that he listen to the students in his office and cut USC’s contract with JanSport now. Eight months is too long to wait for justice. #Trojan18 #CutJanSport
The Mr. Hyphen show is this Saturday!
You voted. And now it’s time. For the “Final 5” to rise and shine.
Five transformative Asian American men representing six transformative community organizations will compete for the coveted crown of Mr. Hyphen 2014, a $2000 cash prize, and a $1000 audience-favorite prize at the 8th Annual Mr. Hyphen Community Fundraiser on April 19 at the historic Marines’ Memorial Theatre in downtown San Francisco.
Your Mr. Hyphen 2014 finalists are:
*Sanjay Makhijani - India Community Center's Gandhi Camp
*Sam Jung - Aypal: Building API Community Power
*Ju Hong - ASPIRE - Asian Students Promoting Immigrant Rights through Education
*Timmy Lu - Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN)
*Leo Esclamado - Filipino/American Coalition for Environmental Solidarityand Alipato Project
Thanks to our Gold Crown sponsor Asian Art Museum and our Silver Crown sponsors San Francisco Federal Credit Union and SoleSpace, this year promises to be, by far, the biggest and boldest Mr. Hyphen yet.
Host: solo performer Kristina Wong
2014 Grammy Award winner Hollis
2011 Kollaboration SF Bay Area winner ANAK
*Phil Yu (Angry Asian Man)
*George Kiriyama (formerly of NBC Bay Area)
*Khmera Rouge (Miss GAPA 2013)
*Samina Sundas (American Muslim Voice)
Styling for finalists by: Retrofit Republic
As our biggest annual fundraiser, Mr. Hyphen allows Hyphen — an all-volunteer nonprofit media organization — to publish its award-winning print magazine, maintain its blog, and basically, survive. At the same time, it also showcases the Asian American community organizers and community organizations that we love in a fun, tongue-in-cheek format. So please come and show YOUR love!
General Admission | $30
VIP | $45
- Reserved front row seating
- Entry to an exclusive pre-show community meet-n-mingle with Kristina Wong, Hollis, guest judges, key community advocates from the Bay Area and beyond, and more
- Food catered by Le Soleil and Burmese Kitchen
Each general admission ticket includes a raffle ticket (VIP comes with 2 tickets), and additional tickets can be purchased with tickets and at the event. Prizes include:
- $500 bicycle from PUBLIC Bikes
- Signed EP from Hollis
- 2 Timbuk2 messenger bags
- $125 in gift certificates from Sports Basement
- 3 watches from Modify Watches
- Patxi’s Pizza gift card
- Styling session from Retrofit Republic
- SoleSpace gift card
- Socola Chocolatier gift card
… and more!
FMI - http://www.hyphenmagazine.com/mrhyphen
By OiYan Poon
For the last few weeks 80-20 and other conservative organizations have spread lies, fears, and hate about what California Senate Constitutional Amendment 5 (SCA 5) is. Their mobilization against SCA 5 is showing that Asian Americans can successfully fight for their interests. But in the process, they’re pushing misconceptions that poison this important policy debate over affirmative action, racial equity and justice in public higher education.
There are two key ways the anti-affirmative action haters are shoveling a lot of bullsh*t about SCA 5. First, they claim SCA 5 is “anti-Asian.” Second, they hold an assumption that tests and grades are race neutral, reliable, and the only valid considerations in selective admissions practices. In the meantime while they’re too busy in a fear mongering campaign, they’re missing a great opportunity to really fight to expand college opportunity for all of the highly qualified students in the state.
Two ways that anti-SCA 5 haters are BSing people:
1. The haters say that “SCA 5/affirmative action is anti-Asian.”
A couple weeks ago, a student told me that she’d heard there was a law being passed in California to ban Asian Americans from the UC. Nowhere in SCA 5’s language does it suggest a ban on or illegal racial quota on Asian Americans in college admissions. SCA 5, if passed, would allow California public universities to include race as one of many variables in their admissions processes. As the U.S. Supreme Court has decided in 1978 (Bakke vs. University of California), 2003 (Grutter vs. Bollinger), and in 2013 (Fisher vs. University of Texas), race can still be one of many factors in selective college admissions and that diversity is important for learning. Race cannot be the only or a determinative factor in admissions.
SCA 5 would make a small difference to highly represented student populations like Chinese Americans, but it would make a big difference to improve college access for other highly qualified but underrepresented studentssuch as Hmong, Cambodians, Laotian, Samoans, African Americans, and Latinos among others. Not only would underrepresented Asian American and Pacific Islander students directly benefit from SCA 5, all Asian American students benefit from more diverse campus learning environments.
2. The haters say that test scores and grades are (a) race neutral and objective, (b) reliable measures of academic abilities, and (c) the primary items in selective admissions.
Nope, nope, and nope. To believe any of these three things about test scores and grades is pretty naïve. The College Board just announced its third overhaul of the SAT in less than ten years, acknowledging significant problems with the test. For decades, researchers have found that test scores are not very objective or reliable in evaluating students. In fact, a recent very comprehensive study of over 123,000 students at 33 selective colleges showed how little test scores can predict about how successful a student can be. Higher test scores don’t necessarily mean better qualifications. If anything, the College Board admits that higher test scores usually means a student comes from a higher economic class.
From New York Times (data from College Board)
Test scores and grades are just two of MANY variables that are commonly incorporated into complex evaluation and admission selection processes. At some selective universities, the admissions review process can include over 900 variables for evaluation. I’m not going to name the hundreds of variables for admission and enrollment management in selective institutions, especially since some institutions consider drastically different variables. However, in addition to race, test scores, and grades here are some other criteria for admission evaluation:
1. Geography of student’s hometown and school (UC criterion 14)
2. Can you pay full or near full tuition?
3. Child/grandchild of a donor or alumna/us of the institution, aka legacy status.
4. Early admission/decision participation increases chances of admission.
5. Demonstrated and awarded talents.
6. Demonstrated ability to overcome adversities and persist through challenges.
7. Demonstrated leadership capacities.
8. Academic major selected.
I am much more than my high school GPA and my SAT scores could ever tell you about me. How about you?
Photos: NEA, OCA
The anti-SCA/affirmative action sentiment represents a small minority of Asian Americans. It is revealing that deception and illogical fear can motivate some Asian Americans to rally around a political issue. I get that anti-SCA 5 folks are freaked out about their personal or their kids’ chances of getting into one of California’s public institutions. It is tougher today for qualified students of all races to get into a California public university, not because of any admission policy, but because of drastic and sustained state budget cuts over the last several decades. Budget cuts have been so bad, the state funded institutions began giving a preference to out of state and foreign students at record numbers to make up for their financial shortfalls.
So if you’re pissed because you’re not getting into a UC or CSU, fight for the state to reinvest in higher education. Why fight over the dwindling number of seats and resources? The passionate advocacy for equality and opportunity by 80-20 and friends is misguided and uninformed, powered by hate and fear, and relies on a lot of BS. Don’t be fooled. The misinformation being spread about affirmative action, SCA 5, and college admissions is not helping to advance racial equity and justice for all.
If you believe in racial equity in education and opportunity, let’s reinvigorate a public re-investment in higher education. After all, a college’s reputation is based on its capacity and resources to provide quality education to all students, and not based on how many students it can turn away.
If you’re pissed, Asian Americans, get up and fight for public higher education!
* * *
OiYan Poon, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of Higher Education at Loyola University Chicago’s School of Education. She earned her Ph.D. in Education and a graduate certificate in Asian American Studies at UCLA in 2010. As a graduate student at UCLA, OiYan was elected the first Chinese American president of the University of California Student Association, which represents and advocates for the interest of all UC students. Prior to pursuing her Ph.D., Dr. Poon was the first Student Affairs Officer in Asian American Studies at UC Davis, where she also served as a comprehensive review reader in the undergraduate admissions process.
Shocking news out of Southern California, where friends and family are mourning the death of a woman who was brutally beaten and left brain dead outside a nightclub in downtown Santa Ana early Saturday morning. Authorities are asking for the public’s help identifying suspects involved in the assault.
Arrest Made in Beating Death of Kim Pham, 23, Outside The Crosby in Downtown Santa Ana
23-year-old Kim Pham was brutally beaten by a group of five people outside The Crosby, a popular nightclub. The incident apparently started when Pham, who was waiting in line with friends, got into an argument with another group that escalated into a physical altercation. According to witnesses, the group — three females and two males — kicked and stomped on Pham even after she fell to the ground.
Police have arrested a female suspect on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and causing great bodily harm. Officers are continuing to search for two other women and two men in connection with the assault.
Family members say Pham passed away from her injuries. (It’s being reported that the victim is still currently on life support, but declared brain dead.) Here’s a statement from her family, posted on Facebook:
Our beloved sister, daughter and friend Kim (Annie) Pham passed away on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 12:36 PM. Kim is currently on life support because her wishes had always been to help others by being an organ donor.
At this time, we ask for privacy to mourn for our loss. Thank you for all your love, support, and prayers and we are still fighting for Kim. Stay strong.
Investigators believe witnesses may have taken more video or photos of the assault, and are asking members of the public to come forward with any documentation from that night. Anyone with information is asked to call the Santa Ana Police Department at 714-245-8390 or OC Crime Stoppers at 855-847-6227.
More here: 23-Year-Old Woman Dies After Brutal Beating Outside A Nightclub
At age 6, I told my mom and dad that I was going to be a doctor because they instilled in me that it was the only way to succeed in the US.
At age 13, I told them that I was going to be a video game designer because I loved playing video games everyday after school.
At age 17, I told them that I was going to be a politician because I wanted to represent for the underrepresented.
At age 21, I told them that I was going to be an academic because I wanted to change the way people think.
At age 24, I tell them that - whether or not I become any of these things - I am going to make them proud."
Score one for the tech-fueled housing boom in San Francisco, and mark down one more poor family ousted from their home.
The elderly Chinese American couple fighting eviction from their low-rent apartment near Nob Hill by a landlord planning to transform it into pricey homes lost the battle for good late Tuesday when they moved everything out and went to a hotel.
The couple, who lived in the two-bedroom unit with their mentally disabled daughter for 34 years, silently loaded a few belongings into a friend’s car just after 8 p.m. and drove away. Relatives and community volunteers worked until after 11 p.m. moving the family’s furniture and other belongings to a storage center.
The eviction of 80-year-old Poon Heung Lee and his family had drawn noisy protests by tenant advocates and sympathy from Mayor Ed Lee and several city supervisors over the past year - but to no avail. The drama may have an afterlife, however, in that it also spurred City Hall and community leaders to craft prospective policy changes to protect others in their predicament.
Board of Supervisors President David Chiu has introduced legislation to give priority for affordable housing to longtime residents being evicted by landlords converting their rentals to housing, and other proposals are expected to be announced this week.
Lee, his 74-year-old wife, Gum Gee Lee, and their 48-year-old daughter were evicted with their neighbors from eight low-cost, weather-beaten apartments at Jackson and Larkin streets so the building’s owner could convert them to tenant-in-common units.
The evictions were legal under the state’s Ellis Act, which allows landowners to oust tenants to renovate apartments and sell them as in-common units. Spurred by the exploding demand for housing, Ellis Act evictions shot up 81 percent in San Francisco over the past year, according to the city’s Residential Rent Stabilization and Arbitration Board.
Building owner Matthew Miller's attorney, Jeff Woo, said Miller “had great sympathy for the Lees … and we wish them well.” But he said it was impractical to leave the building as is. Recently upgraded tenant-in-common units in the area regularly sell for upward of $1 million apiece.
"Before the implementation of the Ellis Act, Mr. Miller reached out and worked to find a way for some other solution that was not an eviction, but that wasn’t possible," Woo said. "Unfortunately, we got to this point."
An attorney for the Lees said they are scheduled to receive $22,000 in relocation costs from Miller.
"It’s been a very difficult time for everyone," said Gen Fujioka, policy director of theChinatown Community Development Center, who helped the family during the eviction fight and then drove a truck with their belongings to the storage facility. “We’re trying very hard to find them a permanent place to live, and we expect that something is just around the corner.”
The Lees remained mostly stoic throughout the move Tuesday night. At one point, Gum Gee Lee sat for a long while in one of the apartment’s empty bedrooms as her daughter held her head in her hands, distressed.
The family lives mostly on Social Security checks and said that despite the help from advocates and Mayor Lee’s office, they haven’t been able to find anything close to the $778 they paid for their Jackson Street apartment.
They said they want to stay near Chinatown, where their lack of English language skills is not a problem and Asian-oriented community services for their daughter’s disability and other needs are plentiful.
"We thought we’d live here until we passed away," Gum Gee Lee said before leaving her home. "And now this. It is all so sad."
The Little Tokyo Community Council and Little Tokyo Service Center are collaborating with a range of community and environmental advocates to help create green, inclusive revitalization in the Little Tokyo neighborhood of Downtown Los Angeles.
In partnership with a professional design, engineering, and economic consulting team, we want to hear your thoughts as community stakeholders to envision and create state of the art plans for properties around the planned Regional Connector station that will advance the goal of sustainable neighborhood revitalization and cultural preservation. With your help and input, the sustainable redevelopment of these sites will have a catalytic effect on the rest of the neighborhood.
Please join us for a multi-day community forum to generate our vision for a truly sustainable Little Tokyo and to identify strategies that promote our environmental, economic, community and cultural values and aspirations. At the forum, there will be a variety of interactive activities and educational tables to gather community input, including specific conversations and listening stations to learn more about different parts of the community. There will also be an opportunity to learn about the LEED for Neighborhood Development sustainability framework, and how that can help inform our environmental vision and goals.
Day 1 September 27, Friday
Interactive Workshops 12-6pm
Koyasan Buddhist Temple
342 E 1st St
Day 2 September 28, Saturday
Interactive Workshops 9:30am-1pm
Union Center for the Arts
120 Judge John Aiso St
Presentation of Work-in-progress 6-7:30pm
Tateuchi Democracy Forum
100 N Central Ave
Day 3 September 29, Sunday
Open House 1:30-3:30pm
Los Angeles Hompa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple
815 E 1st St
*Locations subject to change
Japanese translation available and Korean translation upon request
NAPAWF-SD is mobilizing folks to be aware the upcoming “Asian Bar Crawl” in San Diego (http://www.facebook.com/events/194049470764732/).
Please read our letter below. If your organization would like to sign onto the letter, please let us know by Saturday (9/21) noon as we plan on sending the letter to the promoters and all 7 restaurant owners that afternoon.
Please also spread the word. Thank you!
Dear “Asian Bar Crawl” promoters and restaurant owners,
We recently learned about your Asian Bar Crawl event on Sunday, September 22nd, and we have concerns about the way the event is being represented and publicized, particularly the images of costume ideas you display on your website and Facebook event.
While the costume ideas may be seen as a joke or are intended to be “for fun” at the event, they are horribly offensive and inaccurate representations for many Asians and Asian Americans. They reduce Asian cultures and traditions to a few stale, narrow stereotypes, when ironically, the purpose of your event is to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival, not demean it.
In the spirit of celebrating and respecting these cultures and their histories, we ask that you hold off on the “sexy geisha kimono.” Your costume suggestions are blatantly misogynistic and racist.
In fact, we ask that you remove the entire costume portion of the bar crawl.
If you are going to make a profit from this event, we suggest donating and supporting Mid-Autumn New Year Festivals organized by local Asian American communities, to get a better sense of the meaning and history behind the festival and the real communities that are a part of it. The history and spirit of the Mid-Autumn Festival has nothing to do with cosplay.
Here are website links to a few local events and an article, which elaborates why the costumes you promote are offensive and not appropriate to advertise:
Little Saigon Foundation’s Lantern Festival
San Diego Chinese Historical Museum Family Moon Festival
"We’re a Culture, Not a Costume"
We hope to be able to resolve this situation with you soon. Until then, we will mobilize with Asian American, Pacific Islander and other supportive organizations to spread the word and boycott this event.
National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum - San Diego Chapter (NAPAWF-SD)
[Name of your organization here]
GET AWAY FROM OUR FESTIVALS.