Tag Archives: Filipino American

Where’s mom? New York Times Magazine tries to get to the heart of Tim Lincecum with no mention of his proud Filipino heritage from his mother’s side

The new New York Times Magazine article on Tim Lincecum was fine. And I’m glad to see no less than the French Huguenots mentioned in the comment section on line as an explanation for Lincecum’s fighting spirit.

But let’s not leave out the distaff side.

In fact, reporter Mahler’s story is typical of the Lincecum narrative seen in the mainstream media.

Lincecum’s mom, Rebecca, is always left out of the story.  She’s a full-blooded Filipino American, born in the Philippines,  surname Asis. It’s a fact that the ethnic media has long picked up on, making Tim arguably the best Asian American athlete in professional sports.

In this era of diversity, that’s no small feat.

Reportedly, Lincecum doesn’t like to talk about his mom because his parents divorced about 8 years ago.

But Lincecum does acknowledge his Filipino roots when the  Giants’ have their Filipino American nights.  Lincecum took  the first pitch from Manny Pacquiao two years ago before one of the heritage events.  Still, mainstream stories always neglect any mention of his bi-racial heritage.  Why leave out that fact?
What’s the relevance in the star’s story? It may help explain questions about his size and body type. But it may also provide insight on why he’s such a complex athlete/personality.

More than anything else, Lincecum is a tremendous source of pride for the Filipino American community, forever under-represented in American society.   Why should the French Huegonots be alone in their claim to Lincecum’s achievements?  the guy’s half-Filipino. And  there’s never been a Filipino American in sports, let alone baseball, like him. Certainily not since  Benny Agbayani had that great year for the Mets.

But now Tim has surpassed them all!  

http://tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/11/little-big-man/

Mainstream media finally notices: Olympic champion diver Victoria Manalo Draves is still dead after 19 days

I first heard of Victoria  Manalo Draves’ death more than two weeks ago.  

Draves was an important, iconic figure in the Filipino American community. Born to a Filipino father and a Caucasian mother during a time when mixed-marriages were against the law, young Vicky Manalo  was shunned as a kid in San Francsico from swimming among whites. It didn’t stop Draves from becoming an Olympic champion in 1948.

Of course, that doesn’t mean she gets the respect she deserves on the day of her death.

Today’s obit in the New York Times shows just how far Filipinos, even half-white ones, can be in terms of real inclusion.  

It took the Times 19 days to report the death of an Olympic champion, excusing its tardiness by saying  Manalo’s  death “had not been widely reported.”  I heard about it through the ethnic media.

So the mainstream’s elite newspaper is just 19 days behind in reporting a significant death of a Filipino American. At least now we can measure how far behind the mainstream can be.

So much for diversity in journalism.  At least it wasn’t 19 years.