ideas

  • A group of racial justice leaders stand on stage. A black woman holding a microphone gestures to the audience, while a woman wearing a headscarf raises her fist in a symbol of power.

    The Digital CultureSHIFT: Moving from Scale to Power to Achieve Racial Justice

    Racial justice thought leaders spoke at this year's Netroots Nation on race, technology, media activism, and building our movements on and offline. Read the full transcript from the keynote panel. Read More

  • The author (center) holds an image of Zainichi Korean “Comfort Woman” survivor Song Shing-do halmoni, with Yuri Kochiyama (bottom right) at a 2005 protest in front of the Japanese Consulate in San Francisco. Also pictured: renowned Zainichi human rights activist Shin Sugok and Zainichi scholar of Ethnic Studies Kyunghee Ha.

    Remembrance as Resistance: 'Comfort Women' and the U.S. Pivot to Asia

    Emerging U.S. military strategy in Asia has led to implied endorsement of Japan's denial of its WWII 'Comfort Women' system. The legacy of elders who broke the silence against Japan's wartime sexual slavery system is a call for Asian Americans to fight militarism and state violence with a transnational movement of remembrance, resistance, and solidarity. Read More

  • A group of South Asian American protestors outside, smiling, holding signs with messages like 'Tone down police aggression' and It could be my grandpa! (sad smiley face)'

    Towards a Selfish Solidarity: Building Deep Investment in the Movement for Black Lives

    The need for a deep and selfish solidarity of South Asians with #BlackLivesMatter became nationally visible last year. Sureshbhai Patel, an Indian man visiting America to care for his grandson, was mistaken for “a skinny Black man” by a neighbor who called the cops. When the cops could not communicate with him, because Mr. Patel does not speak English, one officer brutally slammed Mr. Patel into the ground, leaving him partially paralyzed. The police were called on Mr. Patel because he was mistaken for “a skinny Black man;” he was brutalized, beaten to the point of literal paralysis but not killed, because he was understood to be Indian and immigrant. Read More

  • The cover of Jeff Chang's 2014 book, 'Who We Be,' with the autho's name at the top, citing him as 'American Book Award-winning Author of 'Can't Stop Won't Stop'. The title is in big white block letters in the center. At the bottom, the subtitle 'The Colorization of America' is in red and pink.

    We Read: 'Who We Be' by Jeff Chang

    People in my internet circles have been talking a lot lately about what white people think. Whether it's the Whiteness Project, the new video interview series from Whitney Dow, or Bill O'Reilly, who adamantly refuses to acknowledge that white privilege is even a thing, it seems like we're constantly critiquing, agonizing over, and scoffing at what white people think when it comes to race. For many young people of color, it's so readily apparent that they're wrong, even as people of all races are quick to claim a colorblind, colormute stance. Yet I'm pressed to find as much discussion about why these came to be dominant ideas about race and power. Read More

  • A handpainted banner reading 'Asian America Against Police Brutality NAKASEC KRC...' Part of the text is cut off by the cropping.

    Ferguson, Asian America, & Performative Solidarity: Showing Up, Staying Shown

    What is more difficult to exercise than public performative solidarity is living into sustained, long-term solidarity that doesn’t exist in front of a television camera or behind a mic on a large stage. This is the challenge to us, Asian Americans. This is the opportunity to think hard and thoughtfully about resource redistribution; about shared powerbuilding that doesn’t rely on our lowest common denominators; about continuing to bring all we can to moments that demand our presence; and about finding other ways to address whatever shame or guilt we have about being the model minority wedge. Read More

  • A collage featuring Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, a green tank with the text 'Ferguson 2014', protestors in the streets, and a drawing of a Black man with his hands up is overlayed with the text 'But the internet is like a tree that is growing. The people will always have the last word - even if someone has a very weak, quiet voice. Such power will collapse because of a whisper.' - Ai Weiwei. 'Protect the internet. #Fight4NetRights'

    18MR.org's Organizational Comments to the FCC

    Net neutrality is a crucial protection for the economic, civic, and creative lives of Asian American communities. There are few racial demographics so well-connected, for everything from commerce and the arts to political expression to keeping up with family. For these reasons, we believe Title II reclassification is in the best interests of our community, and for the preservation of key rights as emerging players in the American political landscape. Read More

  • A grave reading 'Forever in our hearts beloved son Vincent J. Chin May 18, 1955 - June 23, 1982.' In front of it is an offering of incense and oranges.

    In Search of Justice: Another Way to Remember Vincent Chin

    Vincent Chin has been on my mind a lot lately. It's not just because he passed away 32 years ago Monday, or that I'm the same age now that he was when he was murdered. It's not just that we both have deep ties to the Detroit area, and that ever since I heard his story I wondered what he and his family thought and felt about race here. It's not that I was born just five years after he was killed, to a Chinese father and a white mother, the daughter of auto workers. It's not even that Detroit News columnist Neal Rubin wrote a revisionist editorial not two months before the anniversary of Chin's death this year. Read More