Surprising numbers of undocumented immigrants are coming from Asia. Filipinos are one such group.
Many US residents simply do not realize that the annual limit on permanent resident visas has put some families and individuals waiting for a decade or more. Using simple arithmetic, one can determine that a family reunification visa applicant from the Philippines could potentially wait over 20 years before the pending application is approved.
A long-standing relationship between the nation of the Philippines and the US began with the end of the Spanish American War. Student called Pensionados arrived first; welcome and even sponsored to come study at US Universities. Laborers came next. In the vacuum left unfilled with the Chinese Exclusion laws on the books, and the push to remove Japanese labor from the fields of Hawaii, California and Washington State, laborers emigrated to work in a number of industries. Farming, canneries, fishing, railroads, were just a few of the industries where Filipinos, men only, found themselves.
They too would lose this status in 1934 and the passage of the Tydings-McDuffie Act which included a clause allowing for Philippines independence after the Second World War. This made it possible for 50 (fifty) Filipino immigrant applicants to be admitted into the US annually. Subsequent laws would change that to 100 persons annually; and that too was changed. However, the number of applicants denied or unprocessed each year adds to the number of people left waiting.
Creating this backlog has repercussions, and the nation is now seeing that effect.
She trained here,studied here, got her footing here in Seattle. The influence of so many longstanding Asian Pacific American mentors within social justice movements has changed the way younger APAs see themselves in positions of influence. Go Yuh-Line! (She was also my neighbor for many years here in Ballard.)
Questions to ask students:
What is an elected representative?
What should an elected representative be like?
How do you choose the right candidate for you?
Here are a few easy and free lesson plans we find useful:
When the 115th Congress convenes on Jan. 3, 2017, it will do so with more Asian-American woman senators than ever before.
Three members of the Senate are projected to be Asian-American women, a new high just four years after Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii became the first Asian-American woman ever to be elected to the Senate in 2012.
Projected to be joining her are Kamala Harris — the current attorney general of California — and Rep. Tammy Duckworth from Illinois, who is projected to defeat incumbent Sen. Mark Kirk.
Below are the election results of other races featuring Asian-American or Pacific Islander (AAPI) candidates or candidates involved in the AAPI community.
2017 marks 75 years since the first Japanese Americans we forced into assembly centers and then to concentration camps throughout the United States.
Here in Western Washington American citizens and their parents were held at the Puyallup Fairgrounds– renamed Camp Harmony and then most were sent to Minidoka camp in Idaho. “Except in Portland, Pinedale, Sacramento, and Mayer, large fairground or racetracks were selected to minimize the need for building extra housing. At the racetracks, stables were cleaned out for use as living quarters. At the Portland Assembly Center over 3,800 evacuees were housed under one roof in a livestock pavilion subdivided into apartments.” (Densho Project Website)
Tanforan was a racetrack.
When we consider the events and the rhetoric of today’s electoral race, the importance of memorializing this tragic era of American history is not simply a message for those whose families share the direct legacy: It is for all the country to consider whether we will be complicit in this happening again, or not.
Ghazala Khan, mother to Humayun Khan, married to Khizr. Her family emigrated here from Pakistan via the United Arab Emirates.
Her words raise the question of sacrifice for, and even the responsibility to, a belief that America is a plural society. In front of the nation she and her husband recounted the painful loss of their son, Army Captain Humayun Khan who died during his military tour in Iraq. Mrs. Khan’s own legitimacy in mourning the loss of her son, and even being “allowed” to express her own opinions was challenged by a major party presidential candidate simply because she is of Muslim faith. Read her response to a major political party candidate here.
While not everyone who has sacrificed for this nation-building project called the United States of America served in the military, her words echo a larger call for the recognition of millions of contributions by everyday American people.
Students can be challenged to consider the notions of civic responsibility; of belonging to a country; citizenship; and of nationality versus ethnicity or religious beliefs.
“Hot Tamale Louie was the son of nobody knows who, the grandson of nobody knows who, and the great-great-grandson of nobody knows who. He had been selling tamales in Sheridan since Buffalo Bill rode in the town parade, sold them when President Taft came to visit, was still selling them when the Russians sent Sputnik into space and the British sent the Beatles to America.
By then, Louie was a local legend, and his murder shocked everyone.”
How quickly the town forgot that he was Muslim and a cherished neighbor.