Tag Archives: AALDEF

“Delano Manongs” gets CAAMFest 2014 screening in SF; Tells true story of Filipino American role as the original instigators in the UFW labor struggle unlike typical stories that delete the Filipino and glorify Cesar Chavez

Marissa Aroy’s “Delano Manongs” gets a sold-out screening at CAAMFest2014 in San Francsico Sunday night. Just saw a preview of the documentary and it fills in the blanks in the Filipino-less, UFW/Cesar Chavez story.

It clearly shows how the Filipinos and the Mexican workers forged a union to fight for fairness.

Aroy’s documentary (which will be making the festival circuit and shown on PBS station KVIE-Sacramento) is  in stark contrast to the new narrative feature film on Cesar Chavez opening up in your nearest 12-plex. But the multi-million dollar feature film very conveniently streamlines the UFW saga to make it seem like Chavez did it all.

Oh, a Filipino actor is seen, but it’s almost like an extra.

Accuracy is not a strong point.

In one historical scene, the feature film leaves out Filipino labor leader Larry Itliong entirely.

I asked Arroy if the filmmakers should have made Larry a more prominent part in the new commercial picture opening next week.

“It was a conscious omission,” said Arroy in a phone interview just. “And I……(long pause) ….I think it’s unfortunate not to have Larry there at the table.”

See my post on Itliong:

http://www.aaldef.org/blog/restoring-larry-itliong-to-his-rightful-place-during-filipino-american-history-month.html

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That was no heckler in San Francisco: Yelling “Stop deportations,” an undocumented Asian American stands up and Obama stands down

I’ve played basketball at the Chinese Rec Center in San Francisco’s Chinatown as a kid, but this was a one-on-one game no one would have expected.

An undocumented Asian student in America, Ju Hong, 24, a Dream activist, was one of those with an invite to the special presidential event.

Hong was supposed to be merely ornamental, not a catalyst.

SEE THE REST OF THE COLUMN ON THE ASIAN AMERICAN LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND BLOG.

 

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AALDEF Podcast: Marching And Talking With Todd Endo,Asian American Activist, 50 Years After His First March On Washington

Check for updates at http://www.amok.com

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Don’t forget to check out my column at www.aaldef.org/blog

AALDEF’s Emil Guillermo was at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington with Asian American activist Todd Endo, 72, who as an Oberlin grad marched in 1963.

AALDEF Podcast: Marching And Talking With Todd Endo,Asian American Activist, 50 Years After His First March On Washington

The march began when the speaking stopped.

Here was the start:

 

More pictures and commentary on my blog at the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund blog.

 

In case you didn’t realize it–Trayvon Martin is a descendent of Vincent Chin

A reader from Philadelphia re-tweeted me this sign from a protest there.

Note Vincent Chin’s name at the bottom of the sign.

It’s significant. Trayvon’s family may ultimately take the same road Chin took to seek justice: a criminal case followed by a civil rights case. But as followers of the Chin story know, the Martin’s could find the same pitfalls. Bottom line: there’s simply no guarantee of justice at the end of that long road.

See also my post at the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund blog.

 

 

 

Asiana 214’s modern internet racism vs. the old style that young Milena Clarke has felt all too well

Is there any doubt that the racism that came out of the crash of Asiana Flight 214 remains one of the most under-reported aspects of the whole tragedy?

Asian bad driver jokes/bad pilot jokes? That’s old school racism, but the modern Twitterverse exploded almost immediately after the crash with everyone showing off their repressed racism.

If you’re one of those who think it’s no big deal, then maybe the example of the egregious racism experienced by Milena Clarke will be instructive.  The old-school style still lingers as well.

If you need to know the difference between the old style racism and the new modern one, check out my post on the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund blog.

Vincent Chin: Another year, another anniversary, but a story we will never forget

I was on the road yesterday but did not forget that it was the 31st year after the death of Vincent Chin.

On a day when Edward Snowden continues his trek for freedom, another Giants loss, and a week of monumental constitutional decisions, there was little time on the news spent marking Chin’s story.

Check out my piece on the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund blog to read my column based on the interview with Chin’s killer, first posted last year, the 30th anniversary of his murder.

http://aaldef.org/blog/ronald-ebens-the-man-who-killed-vincent-chin-apologizes-30-years-later.html

 

AALDEF press release on examples of discrimination against Asian Americans on election day

This was released by AALDEF tonight:

November 6, 2012 – Many Asian American voters, especially new citizens and first-time voters, encountered barriers at polling places, including inadequate language assistance, excessive requests for identification and voter eligibility, and missing names on voter rolls. 

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF) dispatched over 800 attorneys, law students, and community volunteers to over 120 polling places in 14 states with large Asian American populations, where they recorded voter complaints and conducted a nonpartisan multilingual exit poll. AALDEF also received reports of voting barriers via a multilingual hotline, by email, and on social media.

States with the most egregious violations include Virginia, where Korean American voters were segregated from other voters into a separate line; Philadelphia, where Vietnamese American voters faced a severe shortage of language assistance; Michigan, where Bengali materials were severely mistranslated; New York, where poll workers in Chinatown were not informed of new rules for voters displaced by Hurricane Sandy; and Georgia, where Asian American voters struggled with discriminatory new proof of citizenship laws.

“Asian American voters had to overcome numerous obstacles in order to exercise their right to vote today,” said Glenn D. Magpantay, Director of AALDEF’s Democracy Program. “Our attorneys are fully investigating every complaint and we will report our findings and observations to local election officials and the U.S. Department of Justice.”

A summary of voting rights violations follows:

  • Annandale, VA

Poll workers separated all Korean American voters into segregated lines because “there were so many,” allowing white voters to vote first, and required to go through additional hoops to vote. Unlike other voters, only Korean American voters were directed to stand and verbally state aloud their names, addresses, and cities and states of residence in English, despite providing government issued identification to vote. Elderly Korean American voters with limited English-proficiency were particularly uncomfortable with the discriminatory treatment.

  • New York, NY

Many Asian American voters displaced by Hurricane Sandy were turned away by poll workers who were unaware of Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order allowing their ballots to be counted wherever they were cast.Incidents occurred in Chinatown, Manhattan and Jamaica, Queens where poll workers refused to give out provisional affidavit ballots to voters. In Flushing and Elmhurst, Queens, elderly Korean American and Chinese American voters were turned away by poll workers and not given affidavit ballots. In Jackson Heights, at least 20 mostly South Asian American voters were turned away. In Chinatown, poll workers were unaware that affidavit ballots were even translated into Chinese.

Required language assistance was inadequate. Queens County has been covered for Asian Indian language assistance under Section 203 of the Voting Right Act since October 13, 2011. However, the New York City Board of Elections did not provide Bengali language ballots to voters, nor were there “Interpreter Available” signs posted outside the sites.

  • Philadelphia, PA

At the South Philadelphia High School poll site, there were too few interpreters to assist Vietnamese American voters. Before Election Day, Philadelphia officials said they had only trained four Asian language interpreters for the entire city. As a result, Asian American voters were turned away from the polls.

  • Hamtramck, MI

Many poll sites in Hamtramck failed to provide Bengali ballots, make translated materials available, or provide interpreters, as is required under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act. In one case, the translated sign displaying the Voter Bill of Rights had nothing to do with voters’ rights. Poll workers also complained that voting machine scanners would not read the translated Bengali ballots. 

  • New Orleans, LA

At three poll sites in New Orleans, limited English-proficient Vietnamese American voters, many of whom were senior citizens, were told that interpreters could not assist them or otherwise translate the ballot for them, in violation of Section 208 of the Voting Rights Act. AALDEF attempted to appeal to local elections officials, yet the hotline number to report problems only led to a voicemail box.

  • Atlanta, GA

Several Asian American voters in Georgia reported that they were not allowed to vote because they had not provided documentary proof of U.S. citizenship, as is required under Georgia’s new proof of citizenship law. One Asian American voter in Cobb County, despite having a U.S. passport, was told that she could only vote by provisional ballot and to go to the County Clerk’s office to prove her eligibility to vote.