SELMA: Some personal reflections and recollections

I found it refreshing, the movie “Selma,” which recounted the Selma to Montgomery marches in 1965 and thru a black lens. Not surprisingly, it met with some criticism from critics, amongst “whites,” principally. Simultaneously, watching “Selma” caused me to reflect on the road from disenfranchisement to enfranchisement that those of Japanese descent traversed in this […]

50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE MOVEMENT: An Asian American family visits the civil rights South

“Why’d y’all come to Birmingham?” the white cashier at Niki’s Restaurant incredulously asked when we mentioned we’d come all the way from Sacramento, Calif. “We came to see the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute,” we replied. “Well, y’all be sure to tell folks in Sacramento to come visit us, you hear,” he said. This was part […]

A trip through Chinese American history

ESCAPE TO GOLD MOUNTAIN: A GRAPHIC HISTORY OF THE CHINESE IN NORTH AMERICA By David H.T. Wong (Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2012, 256 pp., $19.95, paperback) The Chinese American experience goes back nearly two centuries in history. They faced many instances of racial discrimination, most notably blatant racist laws such as the Chinese Exclusion Act. […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Mervyn M. Dymally, former Congressional Black Caucus chair, a vital redress advocate

During the early 1970s, the movement for Japanese American redress (as it would later be called) was born. It started as a collection of grassroots activists seeking to raise popular consciousness about the wartime removal of Japanese Americans. One notable leader was Sue Kunitomi Embrey, who founded the annual Manzanar Pilgrimages. Another central figure was […]

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