Tag Archives: Filipino Americans

Emil Guillermo: Remembering the Delano Grape Strike and the Filipino American leader who forged the way, Larry Itliong


Fifty years ago on Sept. 8, the Filipino farm workers in Delano, Calif., began the historic Grape Strike that brought the civil rights movement to the fields.

Workers  had been used to working for less than a dollar an hour, but now demanded  a fair wage–$1.40 an hour. Or else.

A unanimous strike vote was taken on Sept. 7 in Delano’s Filipino Community Hall. On the next day, the workers were set. Two-thousand or so men and women  of the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AFL-CIO) walked off the job.

Click here to read more about their leader.

Cesar Chavez?




Emil Guillermo: Owner of closed Filipino bakeries in LA speaks about the shutdown, and on the lawsuit that has rocked her business and family life.


In a direct communication with Emil Guillermo Media, Ana Moitinho de Almeida,the daughter of Juan B. Santos, and the co-owner with her husband Gonzalo Moitinho de Almeida of two recently closed California bakeries, admitted that millions of their joint assets were sold recently—not to protect or hide assets—but to fund their expensive legal battle against 11 former employees.

The Almeidas were socked this spring with a $1 million dollar civil suit alleging labor trafficking, labor rules violations, and immigration violations at their L’Amande bakeries in Beverly Hills and Torrance.

But in the last few months, the Almeidas have been liquidating and re-positioning assets, including their bakeries,real estate investments, and Los Angeles area home.

“We needed to find funding somewhere,” Almeida answered in response to my questions via e-mail. “Closure of the bakeries? How can a business survive when …charges, augmented by aggressive press, has descended without mercy, or fair investigation?”

It is the first time the Almeidas have made direct public comments on their asset situation.

Almeida insisted it wasn’t to hide or keep money from the suit, but an attempt to fight what she calls are unfair charges being made by E-2 visa workers whom she sponsored in an “investor visa program.”

Almeida has been posting pictures of her former employees showing that the workers’ allegations are trumped up charges and don’t reflect how they were being treated while working for the Almeida bakeries.

When I asked her why she has been quiet on the matter, she said: “How could I not have declined at that time when the mother load of a lawsuit just hit us? We are a small bakery. We did not have lawyers standing by to help us.”

I’ll have more from Almeida. In the meantime, here’s my  piece on the Almeida’s sale of assets, as I first reported  in the Philippine Inquirer, Manila’s top daily.

See my latest columns on the AALDEF blog.

Emil Guillermo: Back from a short respite–Here’s my interview with ABT’s Stella Abrera

stellaabreraportraitThe first American Filipino to be named principal dancer at ABT, Stella Abrera’s story is more than one of a great artist. It’s a story  of dedication and courage.

When I interviewed her recently, she spoke of how a bad back and calf injury nearly ended her career.

But she never gave up.

Read it here on the NBCNews.com website

And check out my latest on the AALDEF blog. 




Emil Guillermo: Before Jamie Foxx butchered the National Anthem, he criticized Manny Pacquiao’s singing voice by mocking Pacman’s Filipino accent. Yes, it was a racial slur.

Maybe Jamie Foxx is better at lip-synching?

His version of the national anthem during the Pacquiao Mayweather fight was the only thing in the building worse than the fight itself.

(Although, the Burger King guy walking in with Mayweather was pretty bad. I would have asked freckle-powered Wendy).

Here’s Foxx on the anthem.

That was as bad a rendition of F.S. Key as I’ve heard. And I liked the Jose Feliciano version. (If you remember that, you are demographically unnecessary).

But here’s Foxx butchering Pacquiao’s accent on ESPN’s “First Take.”


You don’t have to be Filipino to know that is called a a racial slur.

Filipinos care.

ESPN and Foxx can apologize for that.

The national anthem? That just proves the funny man is no Ray Charles.



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