Archives for 2020

Project Bento volunteers deliver bento to senior New Yorkers

During the spring of 2020 when New York City was the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, residents were abruptly instructed to shelter-in-place. Susan Miyagi McCormac, a vice president and secretary of the Japanese American Association of New York, became concerned about how their older members were faring. Pre-COVID, about 100 Japanese […]

Asians continue to suffer racist hate incidents during the pandemic

About half a year since the coronavirus pandemic has turned life upside down for Americans, a disturbing trend for hate directed against Asians remains a concern. Launched in mid-March, Stop AAPI Hate, an initiative by Asian Pacific Planning and Policy Council, Chinese for Affirmative Action and San Francisco State University’s Asian American Studies Department, is […]

JCYC to hold a virtual run/walk for Black lives

Last year the Japanese Community Youth Council began thinking about how to use their annual SF Aloha Run “not to just raise funds, but to amplify issues that were affecting children of youth in this country,” Jon Osaki, the executive director of the organization, told the Nichi Bei Weekly by phone. JCYC donated part of […]

San Jose names J-Town Park

The San Jose City Council voted unanimously Sept. 1 to name a new park in San Jose’s Japantown Heinlenville Park, after John Heinlen, a German immigrant who opposed the anti-Asian racism Chinese immigrants suffered in the late 19th century. Heinlen went on to become a key contributor in establishing the ethnic enclave’s Chinatown. Nicolle Burnham, […]

Cupertino holds two bell ringing events for peace

In 1945, the U.S. dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It was devastating, killing tens of thousands. However, the U.S. and Japan have since formed a strong connection. In observance of 75 years of peace with Japan, Sister Cities International and Cupertino-Toyokawa Sister Cities, Inc. organized a virtual bell ringing for peace Webinar Aug. […]

THE HEART OF KANJI: Take care of yourself

自 (Ji) means “yourself.” This character represents a person’s nose. In Japanese culture, people point to their nose when they say “me or myself.” 分 (Bun) means “a part of.” The top part of this word represents two pieces, and below this symbolizes a knife. Together, this character shows that our life was divided from […]

COVID-19 test site opens in Oakland Chinatown with services in 12 languages

OAKLAND, Calif. — A multicultural community COVID-19 testing site offering services in a dozen Asian languages, including Chinese, Tagalog and Mongolian, conducted its first tests in Oakland’s Chinatown on Aug. 18, community leaders said. The testing site in Madison Park at 810 Jackson St. is open to everyone whether or not someone identifies as Asian […]

Gov. Newsom signs bill making ethnic studies course a requirement at CSU

Gov. Gavin Newsom sided with the state legislature Aug. 17 by signing a bill that requires California State University students who enter as freshmen in 2021-22 to take an ethnic studies course focused on one of four ethnic groups in order to graduate. Assembly Bill 1460 requires all students enrolled on all 23 CSU campuses […]

JAs serve on the frontlines treating COVID-19 patients

While treating COVID-19 patients on 12-hour shifts, three to four days per week and overtime from mid-March to May, Julia Yuge, an intensive care unit nurse at New York University Langone Health, called her mother, a nurse herself, several times to minimize the stress she’s felt. “My mom’s a nurse so she’s the one that […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Akira Kikukawa and the Japanese American orchestra

(Editor’s note: The following article was co-written with Jonathan Van Harmelen). Some time ago, Jonathan van Harmelen and I wrote a column about the pioneering Japanese xylophonist Yoichi Hiraoka. In the course of our research, we found that in 1970 Hiraoka had performed a concert in Southern California with an orchestra of which neither of […]

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