Monday, November 20, 2006
Boy, was I surprised to see Korean American actor John Cho, of Better Luck Tomorrow and Harold and Kumar go to White Castle fame, listed online as the 11th Sexiest Man Alive! Brad Pitt was only 15th. I did not think that the mainstream even knew who John Cho was!
So then, of course, in the interests of further research, I had to watch People Magazine’s online video featuring photographs of 100 Sexy Men in One Minute. I saw a few Asian faces fly back, but had to replay the video over and over and over and over again (yes, it was torture) to try to identify who they were. Daniel Dae Kim of Lost was one (After more excruciating research, I found out he was Number Eight in 2005). I am not sure of the other’s identity (or if there were any more), the pictures flew by so fast. I guess I will have to get the paper magazine when it hits the newsstands November 17.
You should also check out the beautiful Indian-Canadian UC Berkeley associate professor in earth and planetary sciences and MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Michael Manga who made the list in 2005 under the category of “Smart Guys” (after Bono). According to Hindustani Times, Professor Manga was ranked #14 on the list that year, he was born and raised in Canada, and his father is of Indian origin who immigrated to Canada from South Africa.
For more unrestrained oggling of Beautiful Asian and Asian American men, check out Frances’ Weak in the Knees: Revisiting the "Nice Chinese Boy".
Friday, November 17, 2006
This weekend in the AP News Headlines section at Asian American Village Online, the editors have put together a package of articles focusing on Viet Nam and the Vietnamese American community.
In the first reading, the AP's Jennifer Loven provides an analysis of how Bush's trip to Vietnam revives the Iraqi 'quagmire' comparison. A follow by AP writer Daisy Nguyen discusses changing views among Vietnamese Americans who are considering investments in Vietnam as the Southeast Asian nation's business environment continues to open up. On the other hand, two-part coverage by Terence Chea examines the human rights concerns that remain strong in the community, in profiles of Silicon Valley engineer and activist Cong Thanh Do, and Florida's Nguyen Thuong “Cuc” Foshee, who was recently deported back to the U.S. after being convicted of terrorism in Vietnam.
Outside of politics, a cultural article completes the package, with an AP Member exchange feature by the Washington Post's Michelle Boorstein, focusing on the unique "flavor" of worship at an Arlington, Virginia Catholic church.
Also included in the supplement will be a sidebar featuring job opportunities related to conducting business in Vietnam from the IMDiversity Asian American Village Career Center and Job Bank.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
The column is provided by our new Featured Columist L. Patricia Ice, a Mississippi-based immigration attorney and immigrant rights activist currently taking time out from her successful law practice to serve as an Equal Justice Works Katrina Legal Fellow, working with the non-profit rights education group, MIRA: The Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance at www.yourmira.org. In this role, she will help communities in need in areas around the Gulf Coast, with a special focus on immigrant employment issues such as fair labor standards, and wage and hour problems.
Ms. Ice contributes regular immigration advice stories to area publications including La Noticia and The Jackson Advocate.
The new column will be housed in a new immigration readings department at Hispanic American Village, the sister site of Asian American Village, providing careers and feature content for Latino professionals.
Sunday, November 12, 2006
According to the Fresno Bee newspaper, the Nov. 7 win also makes Xiong just the third Hmong elected official in California.
Xiong's victory is being heralded as an important step for Hmong and other Southeast Asians not only locally, but nationwide. Hios campaign is credited with providing inspiration for increased political participation by members of small communities with generally low turnout and little representation in local governments.
In results published by the city, Xiong was elected by 54.17% of voters, or 5,171 votes.
The controversial Proposal 2 to ban Affirmative Action in Michigan passed by a wide margin, becoming the third state, after California and Washington, to outlaw preferential treatment to groups or individuals based on race, gender, color, ethnicity, or national origin for public employment, education, or contracting purposes. The proposal and its potential to roll back years of progress for women and minorities was opposed by pretty much everyone--Republicans, Democrats, business, labor, social and religious organizations--except the Ku Klux Klan.
The Detroit Free Press reports, “With 99 percent of precincts reporting, 58%, or 2,129,506 people, voted yes on Proposal 2 and 42%, or 1,538,520 voters, opposed it.” Although pre-election polling was very unreliable because people did not want to appear racist, Proposal 2 was generally supported by white voters who felt that affirmative action was not fair to them and their families.
Dave Waymire, spokesman for One United Michigan, the major opposition group to Proposal 2, told the Detroit News, "Sadly it appears that voters have been deceived by a fraudulent campaign … that serves to divide Michigan and ignores the culture of inequity that divides our state and country….We are the most segregated state in the country and we are the most segregated metropolitan region in the country. That fact is a major impediment to our growth. If we don't overcome that, the state and region will continue to drift. This ballot proposal makes it hard to overcome those important serious racial differences."
With the passage of Proposal 2, the enrollment of black, Hispanic and Native American students at the University of Michigan is expected to drop from 12-14 percent of the student body to about 4-6 percent. In a statement released Tuesday, University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman states: “Regardless of what happens to Proposal 2, the University of Michigan will remain fully and completely committed to diversity. I am determined to do whatever it takes to sustain our excellence by recruiting and retaining a diverse community of students, faculty and staff." Coleman also stated that the university would explore all legal options available to defend the university’s admissions practices.
On Wednesday, UM President Mary Sue Coleman addressed the University of Michigan community: "Together, we must continue to make this world-class university one that reflects the richness of the world. I am standing here today to tell you that I will not allow this university to go down the path of mediocrity. That is not Michigan. Diversity makes us strong, and it is too critical to our mission, too critical to our excellence, and too critical to our future to simply abandon." See Coleman’s full statement.
The next step for supporters of affirmative action and opponents of Proposal 2, including The Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary (BAMN) and the University of Michigan, will be the courts as they challenge the legality and constitutionality of this amendment.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Says Results Signal Dramatic Rise in Asian American Political Clout
WASHINGTON, D.C. /
"With Democrats taking the House and the Senate at the national level, and making significant inroads on the state level, our
What is more, Asian American Democrats won high-profile state races across the nation. In
Across the coast in
Races that are still too close to call include those for Washington State congressional candidate Darcy Burner (WA-8), who maintained a razor-thin margin over GOP incumbent David Reichert (whose campaign has stated that it did not reach out to Asian American voters), 50.26% to 49.58%. In
Candidates endorsed by the
"We are honored to have such a qualified slate of candidates this year," said Gautam Dutta, National Endorsements Chair of the
The AAA-Fund (aaa-fund.org) is a national Democratic political organization whose goal is to increase the voice of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in local, state and federal government, by encouraging APAs to volunteer on campaigns, raise money for candidates, and run for political office.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Webb to be VA Senator after George Allen Concedes Defeat
Afternoon press conference concession finalizes Dems' majority in the Senate. The race was particularly closely watched by the Asian American community coast to coast...
Tong's win, over Republican Rep. Don Sherer, was apparently unusually tight -- with both campaigns declaring victory while the ballots were being carefully counted. The blow-by-blow is here.
Accounting for all these attributes, CNN's poll showed Asian American voters (2% of those polled) also continuing to inch toward the left, giving 62% of their votes went to Democrats running for the U.S. House this year.
Although this represents a slight increase over the 61% of Asian Americans who reported voting for John Kerry in CNN’s 2004 election night exit polls, it continues what must be considered a radical leftward shift that Asian Americans have made recently since giving their overwhelming support to both George H.W. Bush and Robert Dole in the 1990s.
Additional customized exit poll information is available through CNN's comprehensive database here.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
The AP reports that 69% voted in favor of the amendment, with 97% of precincts reporting.
In Orange County, Tan Nguyen lost his House race against incumbent Democrat Loretta Sanchez (California 47). Nguyen was set off track after allegations that a mailing intimidating Latino voters was connected to his campaign.
Nguyen had previously made an unsuccessful primary attempt to run for the 46th congressional district in 2004, and his campaign this year had little backing from the Republican party.
As expected, incumbent Republican Rep. Bobby Jindal (LA 01) was projected by CNN to have enjoyed an easy win on Tuesday, taking a whopping 88% of the vote in four-candidate race, including two Democratic and one Libertarian challenger. Re-election for the popular Representative, who is Indian American, had never really been considered at-risk, particularly since he became even better known nationally following the hurricane and floods of 2005. Despite his unsuccessful gubernatorial race against Kathleen Blanco in 2003, Jindal has been viewed as a young politician with a highly promising career in his party.
As the first U.S. Senator of Native Hawaiian ancestry (he is of mixed Native Hawaiian and Chinese background), Akaka serves on the Indian Affairs Committee and chairs the Congressional Task Force on Native Hawaiian Issues, and was the chief champion of the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act (popularly referred to as "The Akaka Bill".) Akaka is also the only Chinese American in the U.S. Senate.
Accompanying Akaka to Washington will be a new House colleague, Democrat Mazie Hirono, who won her campaign for the 2nd District, and incumbent 1st District Rep. Neil Abercrombie. The state’s other Senator, Daniel Inouye, did not face reelection this year.
Delaware Senatorial hopeful Jan Ting, a Chinese American law professor at
Ting, a Republican challenger to incumbent Senator Thomas Carper, would have been the first Asian American the state had sent to
As of 7:55 a.m. ET, according to CNN, the Chinese American Congressman held a commanding lead, with 65% out of a four-candidate field.
See updated results here.
In California, Doris Matsui prevailed even more handily in her bid to once again represent California’s 5th district. Elected in 2005 to take over the seat held by her late husband, the popular Bob Matsui, the Japanese American Congresswoman won re-election last night with 71% of the votes from a four-candidate field.
Nov. 8 - In a historic midterm election night, high turnout among American voters has significantly changed the balance of power in Washington DC, with the Democratic Party retaking the majority of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Anti-incumbent sentiment and dissatisfaction with the war in Iraq led to sweep in which Democrats wrested control of at least 28 seats, with 14 still undecided.
With two key Senate races, in VA and MT too close to call as of this writing, and likely headed to recount challenges, Democrats also stand chance to take back majority control of the Senate.
The election saw historic landmarks set in a number of aspects. These include: Positioning Nancy Pelosi to become the first woman Speaker of the House; electing Deval Patrick as the first African American governor in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; and sending Democrat Keith Ellison, an African American, to represent Minnesota’s 5th as the first Muslim in the House of Representatives.
Preliminary exit polling indicates that unusually high turnout was reported nationwide, affected by a number of controversial ballot initiatives as well as support for specific candidates. Minority voters, swing voters and non-traditional coalition-building also played an important role in the shift. In the most recent exit poll figures by CNN, non-white voters veered strongly to the left, with 76% of non-white men and 78% of non-white women going Democrat.
The same data indicate that while white voters overall leaned Republican, it was by a smaller margin (51% GOP to 47%) than expected, due largely to a 49/49 split among white women voters. African American voters leaned even more heavily Democrat than expected, at 89%, despite the GOP’s fielding a number of prominent Black candidates in high-level races in states such as Ohio and Pennsylvania. Latino and Asian voters, who have traditionally been more inclined to lean Republican, emerged as clear and growing swing voters, breaking to the Democrats at 69% and 62% respectively. Other non-white voters including Native Americans tracked in CNN’s polling split 56% Democrat to 41% Republican.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Among the many other news items and commentaries we've posted this season, an eleventh-hour series of briefs covering the following topics:
Historic Cycle for Asian American Women
Anti-Affirmative Action Leader Takes it Where He Can Get It -- even the Ku Klux Klan
New Mexico Looks to Do the Right Thing
Macaca-gate – Continued
The Long, Long Arm of Jack Abramoff
Not So “Minnesota Nice”: GOP Candidate Operative Caught in “Jap” Rant on Video
80-20 Initiative Weighs in on Additional MO Race
AAAFUND: Barve, Lee and Valderrama All Move Ahead in MD
Controversy Stirs as VFW Committee Snubs Vet Duckworth after Changed Rules
APA Youth Voters: The Good News and Bad
Other Features of Interest in Our Midterms Coverage
Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Have the Potential to Swing Races Across the Country
Nonpartisan NPO APIAVote shows races, stats, where our turnout can be key, even decisive
Election Heats Up in Heavily Chinese San Francisco District
By Eugenia Chien, New America Media
The Chinese media has been closely watching the district election in San Francisco that could determine whether the large Chinese community will have a Chinese American on the city’s Board of Supervisors. Asians make up a third of San Francisco's population.
Has the GOP Given Up on Asian Americans?
Editorial by Stewart Ikeda
A quick, side-by-side, hypertext comparison indicates "Yes". But is that good for APA Democrats?
“Hello? Excuse me? Don’t forget I’m here, too.”
Frances Kai-Hwa Wang, AAV Acting Editor and University of Michigan alum, on "Asian Pacific Americans, Affirmative Action, and Michigan’s Proposal 2"
APAs: Beware of the VA Senate Race
Eric Byler on the "N-word," the "M-word," and the midterms in Virginia following Sen. George Allen's insults to Asian-American attendee at rally. [with videos]
Vietnamese Media Gauge Fallout from Campaign Scare Letter
By Andrew Lam, New America Media
How will the scandal surrounding O.C. congressional candidate Tan Nguyen and a scare letter mailed to Latino immigrants affect other VietAm, GOP candidates?
80-20 Swings to Dems after Dean's Glass Ceiling Promise
DNC Chairman agrees to support Congressional hearings on glass ceiling discrimination against Asian Americans; two from GOP also supported
MD Delegate candidate Kris Valderrama
MD TV host, daughter of noted Filipino-American political family, looks to carry on the torch
Business Diversity at Stake in Same-Sex Marriage and Civil Unions Bans, Too
Editorial by Stewart Ikeda
Opinion: "Lifestyle" discrimination, and indiscriminate constitutional tinkering, can have unintended labor and economic consequences
Letter from Wisconsin: Bait-and-Switch in the Midterm Elections
By Jasmine Alinder
A married WI woman with "a slight fear of strangers" was surprised to find herself canvassing door-to-door in opposition to a proposed ban on same-sex marriages and civil unions (gay and straight), and is left wondering why the issue so forcefully hits home.