AACA Community Forum Addresses Discrimination

Is it just socially inappropriate or is it discrimination? The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) is there to help you sort that out. On Wednesday May 25, MCAD Chairman Julian Tynes spoke at the Asian American Civic Association (AACA) “Know Your Rights, Know the Law” Community Forum to introduce the agency to the Asian American community and encourage participation with the Commission to stamp out discrimination in worksites and public spaces. “Discrimination is still a foreign concept for most immigrants.” said Chau-ming Lee, Executive Director of AACA. “The challenges that we see are: understanding what discrimination is, dispelling the fear … Continue reading

UMass hold Asian American Digital Storytelling Event to Showcase Student Filmmaking Talents

Students from the University of Massachusetts Boston showcased their filmmaking and storytelling talents in an exhibition at the Boston Apple Store on Monday, May 16. An audience that swelled from 40 to nearly 80 members sat and stood to watch several student films from the UMass undergraduate course, titled Asian American Media Literacy, all produced on the Apple software program, iMovie. Topics and images included in the student films ranged far and wide, from moments at the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall to the devastation in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. However, all were pulled from personal experiences and encounters. The … Continue reading

MAP for Health Celebrates 15th Anniversary with Iron Chef-style Cook Off

Massachusetts Asian and Pacific Islanders (MAP) for Health celebrated their 15th Anniversary by holding a cooking competition in the style of the Food Network show “Iron Chef”, as well as an award ceremony at the Calderwood Pavilion on Friday, May 20. The event happened at a nice timing, following the National Asian and Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, which occurred the day before, May 19. MAP for Health’s event, which hosted close to 80 people, began at 6 pm with an energetic performance by The Genki Spark, dubbed the first and only Asian women’s taiko performance group in the country. … Continue reading

Laura J. Sen Honored at MAAC Dinner

The fifth annual Asian-American Unity Dinner, which rewarded Laura J. Sen with the 2011 Massachusetts Asian American Leadership Award, was held at Hei La Moon Restaurant in Chinatown on May 12. More than 300 prominent members of the Asian American community attended the dinner, which began at 6pm and featured an extravagant menu and live entertainment. A surprise appearance by Massachusetts Treasurer and Receiver-General Steve Grossman opened the speeches for the evening, during which Grossman praised Sen’s “leadership and community-building efforts.” Melissa Schuyler, Commission Chair, then introduced the Dinner’s co-chairs, Rebecca A. Lee and Joe Chow, who both gave speeches … Continue reading

Plans for Cutting-Edge Cultural Center Discussed at TCC

Despite plans for a proposed branch library in Chinatown being scrapped, a new strategy to create a new, cutting-edge cultural center was discussed at the recent Chinatown Coalition (TCC) meeting, May 12, at 9.30am. Stephanie Fan of the Chinese Historical Society put the deterioration of the plans (for the branch library) down to the recession, and the fact that technology is rapidly changing. “The government wanted to shut down four neighborhood branch libraries and [the only reason] they didn’t close them was due to the surprising number of protesters,” said Fan. “Therefore, our chances are almost nil.” Nonetheless, new plans … Continue reading

WGBH Shows Documentary, Discusses Identity, in Celebration of Heritage Month

On his seminal 1973 album “Grain of Sand,” Chris Iijima sings, “We are the children of the Chinese waiter/Born and raised in the laundry room /We are the offspring of the Japanese gardener /Who leave their stamp on America.” The album was the first of its kind, a call to action and an invitation to community and identity for Asian Americans at a time when no such label existed. Almost 40 years later, a crowd of 150 people gathered at WGBH studios in Brighton to watch “A Song For Ourselves.”  This documentary, by Tadashi Nakamura, was about Iijima’s life and … Continue reading