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7.31.2005

Archived Post - July 2005



07.18.05

Hey everyone. For the next few weeks, I'll be taking a short break from this website, for personal reasons. I'm going to be kind of busy, so I won't be able to allot adequate time for the angry stuff. Sorry if this inconveniences anyone, but I'm sure you'll get over it quickly. And I'll be back before you know it. In the meantime, I'd appreciate it if people could refrain from writing in with links and stuff, for the time being—my email tends to get clogged up easily. I won't be checking my mail, and I won't posting anything new for a little while. Thank you for your cooperation. See you back here next month. Stay Angry.


07.18.05

These days, I am a man with not a whole lot of time on my hands. Thus, I give this long list of random links, with minimal commentary. The extremely lazy version:


Sorry about that...

07.16.05

The remains of Michael Matsushita, 37, have been identified among the London bombing victims: American confirmed killed in London bombings

07.16.05

Got a press release from the Asian Pacifica American Legal Center... I don't normally post these things verbatim, but I think it's pretty important:


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 13, 2005

PRESS RELEASE

Contact: Daniel Huang

Asian Pacific American Legal Center

(213) 241-0237

Hate Crimes Civil Remedies Act to Provide Justice for Hate Crime Victims Passes Senate Floor

LOS ANGELES ñ On Monday, July 11, 2005, AB 378, the Hate Crime Civil Remedies Act, authored by Assembly Member Judy Chu, passed the California
State Senate with a vote of 23-12. Co-sponsored by CAA/Center for Asian American Advocacy, Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC), Asian Law
Caucus, and Asian Americans for Civil Rights and Equality, a collaborative project of the three organizations, AB 378 provides justice for hate crime
victims by extending the time limit for which they can file a civil suit for a $25,000 civil penalty from one year to three years.

AB 378 was inspired by a 2003 case in San Francisco where five Asian American teens were brutally attacked by a mob of approximately 20 white
youth while celebrating their impending high school graduation. The five teens were accosted with racial slurs and chased down by their attackers as
they tried to flee the scene. Although three attackers were caught at the scene, only one attacker was identified and charged with a crime. Even
then, it took one year to bring that perpetrator to trial. It was only at trial that the identity of the other attackers came to light.

Unfortunately, the lengthy process of identifying hate crime perpetrators and concluding a criminal trial creates obstacles that prevent hate crime
victims from seeking meaningful civil remedies. Victims are advised not to file civil suits until the criminal case has concluded since civil suits can
negatively affect the outcome of the criminal trial. The unfortunate consequence, though, is that many victims find themselves beyond the statute
of limitation to file a civil lawsuit once the criminal trial has ended.

"AB 378 will give hate crime victims a fair opportunity to seek civil remedies," stated Assembly Member Judy Chu. "Victims should not be forced to
choose between seeking criminal justice or civil redress. My bill, AB 378 will allow adequate time for hate crime perpetrators to be identified and
for the criminal trial to conclude prior to the victimís loss of their rights to file a civil suit."

"Hate crimes strike fear in our communities," stated Stewart Kwoh, President and Executive Director of APALC. ìAs a society, we cannot tolerate hate
crimes, which assail not only the individual victim, but all members of the community. We all have a stake in providing meaningful justice for hate
crime victims."

"Despite the dialogue and achievements of the civil rights movement, many Californians continue to be violently targeted based on their race,
ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation," cited Luna Yasui, acting Executive Director of CAA. "The civil penalty is a statement of our
society's opposition to these types of crimes, and AB 378 makes it meaningful by allowing more time for victims to seek it."

"The broad-based coalition of supporters is a sign of the public sentiment to improve justice for hate crime victims. We want to thank Assembly Member
Judy Chu and her staff for their tremendous leadership in addressing hate crime issues," said Phil Ting, Executive Director of Asian Law Caucus.

Next, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will determine whether to sign AB 378 into law.

# # #


Now you know.

07.16.05

The FBI goes into a small community, (unjustly) rounds up some Pakistani men in the name of national security, and now the public is looking at all the brown folk fearing Muslim or Arab terrorists in their midst: Witchhunt at Lodi

07.15.05

Okay, New York filmheads, it's time to get it on. The 28th Asian American International Film Festival 2005 kicks off tonight the Opening Night Screening of Clean, and a Gala Reception at the Asia Society. With special guest Maggie Cheung! How cool is that? The festival runs through July 31, so make sure you go check something out.

07.15.05

Chien-Ming Wang, the rookie who has been the New York Yankees' most consistent starter since his promotion from the minors in April, may be finished for the season because of a shoulder injury: Yanks May Lose Wang for Rest of the Season

07.15.05

No, it can't be: Kimchi may cause stomach cancer.

07.14.05

Hot off the recent announcement that Rick Delgado was joining Bay Area radio waves, here's this fun tidbit over at HipHopMusic.com: Obscure Comic Threatens Me on XM Radio. Todd Lynn, the on-air personality who got canned from Hot 97 for jokingly threatening to "shoot Asians" has a few more idiotic things to say. Read about it (and listen), in all its ignorant, racist glory right here. Some fools never learn.

07.14.05

Crossing East had a story on Cambodian Musician Daran Kravanh, today on NPR's Day to Day: Surviving Pol Pot, with Music

07.14.05

Hey everybody, it's the strange (naked) Asian woman: From China to Playboy, Bai Ling's 'free spirit' guides her career and relationships

07.14.05

The 2005 Emmy Awards nominees were just announced. Naveen Andrews has been nominated for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for Lost, and Sandra Oh has been nominated for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for Grey's Anatomy. Both nods are well deserved, I say.

07.14.05

An article on The Beautiful Country, "the grueling odyssey of 20-year-old Binh to find his father, the American soldier his Vietnamese mother married during the war": Crossing a sea of adversity to find his father

07.14.05

An article on Jeremy Tran, that Asian kid on The Scholar: Vietnamese American Vies to be "The Scholar" On Reality Show. Watch out, bro. They say nice guys finish last.

07.14.05

Presenting the winners of the The 2nd Annual 72 Hour Film Shootout! A national competition where teams had 72 hours to write, edit, shoot, and produce a 6 minute short film.

Grand Jury Award

Team: Kiko

Film: "Mr. Kiss"

2nd Runner Up

Team: Seven Oh Five

Film: "Zappka aka The Space Rocker"

1st Runner Up

Team: 1+1>2

Film: "A.K.A. 084 94 ###"

Congratulations! Check out the full list of winners here.


07.14.05

I think this website is both infuriating and informative: The Authentic History Center. Check out the racist crap filed under "Asian." Makes you angry, doesn't it? I'm particularly fond of those "Chop Suey Specs." Still, I'm glad someone has taken the time to catalog and exhibit these artifacts. It's a valuable, enlightening resource.

07.14.05

Earlier this month, local and federal law enforcement raided more than a dozen brothels in San Francisco and Los Angeles, exposing a major sex trafficking ring. Officials discovered more than 100 women, primarily from South Korea, smuggled into the country to work as prostitutes. Many were reportedly promised jobs as waitresses before being forced into prostitution. Following the crackdown, some Korean Americans have voiced concern over the tarnished image of Korean immigrants and have called for their the community to take a closer look at what goes on in their own backyards: Koreans Outraged, Seek Greater Understanding After Major Sex Trafficking Bust in California

07.14.05

A movement has sprouted up against the hiring of Rick Delgado and Bay Area radio station Wild 94.9 FM. Sign the peition here: Say No To Tsunami Song DJ. I don't have to remind you about the "Tsunami Song," do I?

07.14.05

Recent column from L.A. Chung: Stories of 'no-no boy' from World War II deserve attention in today's troubled times

07.14.05

This is a nice op-ed piece by writer Suketu Mehta: A Passage From India

07.14.05

According to the 2005 RTNDA/Ball State University Annual Survey, Asian Americans made up only 1.9 percent of the total television news workforce, down from 2.2 percent last year. This saddens the AAJA: Decline in Asian American & Pacific Islander TV Journalists Disappoints AAJA. What, it's no longer fashionable to have Connie Chung-alikes on local news staffs?

And because we just can't enough of racist morning radio... Read this blog entry from Hyphen: Even More Racist Radio - Enough Already!

07.13.05

Friends of Mike Matsushita—the American missing since last week's terrorist bombings in London—have started a webpage for him: Mike's Mates

07.13.05

According to a 102-page report releaased by the state Human Rights Commission task force, the protests and controversy that followed allegations of racial harassment at Washington State University earlier this year may reflect "an undergraduate penchant for revolutionary drama more than anything else." I don't know all the facts of the case, but these findings are disappointing: "Drama" followed WSU incident. If you recall, WSU student Nina Kim alleged that she was the target of racial taunts from a group of white basketball players. Man, so Asian American groups get angry, and they dismiss it as "revolutionary drama"?

07.13.05

I'll be honest. I was a little stunned when I heard that Justin Lin would be taking on directing duties for Fast and the Furious 3. Even more at a loss when heard about the plot—an American outsider taking on racers in Japan. Then I thought about it some more. On the one hand, there's the obvious way of looking at it: this is going to suck crap nuggets. On the other hand, perhaps in Lin's capable hands, the project could be steered with a watchful eye. Is that being a little too optimistic? I don't know. But I have started hearing things...

First, I heard from a guy who had actually gotten a look at the script. He had nothing good to say about it, describing it "exactly what you would expect." The story takes place in Japan, and emphasizes how foreign and alien Asian culture is. It exoticizes Asian women, and of course, portrays all Asian men as hostile. Our informant writes, "Like many movies, it has a white person joining an Asian activity and beating out all the Asians. However, since it involves army brats stationed overseas, it becomes USA vs Japan...except USA only includes Hispanics, Blacks, and Caucasians. In other words, all the ethnicities team up against evil Asians." That didn't get too excited, but hell, I wasn't surprised.

I came across this casting call online. Looks like the official title at the moment is Fast and the Furious 3: Tokyo. It says they're looking for "male actors of any ethnicity and Japanese female actresses leads." Here's the info straight from Finn Hiller Casting, including actual script pages. Didn't look promising.

Then I started hearing from other people who know people... Word is getting around that the lead role in FF3 is indeed open to males of all ethnicities, and that Justin Lin and Co. would actually prefer an unknown Asian actor for the role. I'd like to see them try and sell that to Universal, but okay. This could definitely be a way of messing with the script, and putting a different spin on what would be otherwise be stereotype city. Who knows? We'll have to see.

07.13.05

Though he's not in the starring cast, actor Michael Paul Chan has been showing up as regular on TNT's The Closer. He's one of those veteran Asian American actors you see all over the place. Remember, he was Data's dad in The Goonies? Yeah.

07.13.05

Hawaii's Akaka bill would extend federal recognition to native Hawaiians, giving them the rights of self-government as indigenous people that only American Indians and native Alaskans now enjoy: In Hawaii, a Chance to Heal, Long Delayed

07.13.05

Every now and then, I sort of sit back and wonder what's going on in Chinatown. Specifically, the Chinatown in Portland, OR. Good thing the internets keep me informed: Portland's Chinatown moves east

07.12.05

This guy, Mike Matsushita, might be one of the only American casualties in last week's terrorist bombings in London: Fled New York, lost in London

07.12.05

Oh hell yes. It's the 2005 APIA Spoken Word & Poetry Summit in Boston, August 18-21. The registration deadline is July 15, so get your act together here. More on this later at a later date...

07.12.05

An article from last week's Santa Fe New Mexican on the Wen Ho Lee case, and its implications for New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson: If Richardson named as source in Wen Ho Lee case, this too shall pass. What's worth noting is the quote near the bottom, from Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics: "The good news [for Richardson] is that besides you and me, there's probably only 140 in this country who remember Wen Ho Lee. Someone like Bill Richardson has overcome a lot of obstacles. He could overcome this." Only 140 people? That's just downright offensive to all the people who fought and struggled to get Lee released. It's also implying that Asian American voters aren't worth paying attention to in the 2008 election... That's not right.

07.12.05

The U.S. release of Park Chan-Wook's J.S.A. (Joint Security Area) is now available on DVD from Palm Pictures. It's a great film, and completely different in tone from Park's most recent film to hit the States, Oldboy. The DVD is dubbed in English (boo) for us lazy Americans, but thankfully the Korean language is also intact, with subtitles. Oh, and once again, the cover artwork (helicopter, exposions) has little to do with what actually transpires in the film.

07.12.05

The wounds of historical inter-Asian conflict still run deep. The Bay Area's Chinese Holocaust Museum, Rape of Nanking Redress Coalition and Global Alliance for Preserving the Truth of the Sino-Japanese War want Japan to make amends for its actions before and during World War II: Activists keep focus on Japan's atrocities; Chinese Americans lead effort to put pressure on Tokyo

And according to Japan's Kyodo news agency... Japanese customers must apologize for their country's wartime occupation of China before getting a seat at a restaurant in former Manchuria or find another place to eat: Food means having to say you're sorry

07.12.05

The rumors are true. Chow Yun Fat has signed as a villain in the as-yet-untitled second sequel to Pirates of the Carribean: Chow Down for "Pirates" Part 3

07.12.05

I like documentaries. I like Asian American documentaries. AZN Television is showing Asian American documentaries on Saturday nights at 11pm throughout July. This past weekend was From Spikes to Spindles. This Saturday, they're airing First Person Plural. Then AKA Don Bonus on July 23, and Banana Split and Bittersweet Survival on July 30. That's cool.

07.12.05

Chinatown bank customers are all about the safety deposit boxes: Keeping Luck Under Lock and Key. I did not know this.

07.12.05

Run, Jackie. Run from Hollywood as quickly as possible. Why Chris Tucker is a damn fool: Jackie Chan Explains Why "Rush Hour 3" Didn't Happen. Then again, can't say I'm too broken up that we won't be seeing another installment of Rush Hour.

07.12.05

Aw no. I love Joan Chen. She's a gorgeous, talented actress who absolutely shines in Saving Face. So why did she have to go and say something stupid like this: "I'm comfortable being a woman. I have no problem being a 'white man's fantasy'". Third paragraph from the bottom: Joan Chen: The "Elizabeth Taylor of China" Plays It For Laughs

07.12.05

At first I thought it sounded gross, and then I was kind of intrigued: Suedy's Koo-Ki Sushi. Here's an article from earlier this year on their sweet sushi confections: On a Roll

07.11.05

Check out The Onion's review of the DVD commentary track for Son of the Mask. Check out what it says under "Comments on the Cast": "And note to future directors who work with Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle star Kal Penn: Don't tell him to 'do it more Indian.'" Sounds like Kal Penn got a little angry. You gotta love that.

07.11.05

This movie kind of snuck up on me: The Beautiful Country. It's about a young man (Damien Nguyen), born of a Vietnamese woman and an American soldier, who becomes determined to make his way to America and locate his father in Texas. It opened in New York and Los Angeles on Friday, to fairly positive reviews. Don't know much else about it, other than that Bai Ling's in the cast—and you all know I think Bai Ling is so normal.

07.11.05

Big bad China scary, America scared, blah blah, blah, blah blah blah: U.S. concerned about China military buildup

07.11.05

Desis. You're so hot right now. And marketers want your money. From the July 11 issue of TIME: Chasing Desi Dollars

07.11.05

Some folks have pointed out to me that one of the Navy SEALs who died in Afghanistan last week was Petty Officer Second Class James Suh, 28, of Deerfield Beach, FL. This article mentions a bit of his background: Heavy Toll in Afghan Fight for Navy's Proud Elite. R.I.P.

07.11.05

Meet Scott Tang, another one of these Asian American singer-songwriter guys. He's independently releasing his first full-length album, Late Night Drives, and kicking it off with a CD Release Party. Friday, July 15, 8pm at Chow Fun in Los Angeles. More info at his website, www.scotttang.com. It's a celebration of music and community. Can you dig that? I can.

07.09.05

East Coast represents. The 28th Asian American International Film Festival in starts next! July 15-31 in New York. Get yourself ready for Asian people in movies. A whole festival full of them.

07.09.05

Aw crap. Another sad development in the world of radio: 'Tsunami Song' producer to start Bay Area morning show Monday on Wild 94.9. Yeah, Rick Delgado, the guy who got fired from New York's Hot 97 for his feel-good ballad, "The Tsunami Song." Now, I didn't expect this guy to get blacklisted... I figured he'd find some kind of radio gig out there. But as a Bay Area native, I find it especially troubling that he'd get hired at Wild 94.9's morning show—broadcasting to a market with one of the largest Asian American communities in the country. That's how it goes, I guess. Clear Channel don't really care about you and me.

07.09.05

You've heard of the Kings of Comedy. Maybe you've heard of the Queens of Comedy. Heck, maybe you've even heard of the Latin Kings of Comedy. But are you ready for the Kims of Comedy? A standup comedy showcase. I've seen all of these guys perform, and they're a group of funny, talented comics: Kims of Comedy today -- royalty tomorrow?

07.09.05

Just heard that Kelly Hu is in the latest issue of Maxim. Whoa. She is not fully clothed.

07.07.05

Just so you know, the 72 Hour Film Shootout Wrap Party is next week, July 13, 6-8pm at MTV Studios. They'll be announcing the winners! That's pretty freakin' exciting. Seating is limited, so if you plan on going, make sure you RSVP. Get all the details here.

07.07.05

A couple of manga-related stories... first, Initial D, based on the Japanese comic book, kicks Star Wars' ass at the Hong Kong box office: 'Star Wars' Overshadowed by Japanese Comic

Also, another one of those manga-is-so-hot-right-now articles: Japanese manga takes humongous step. Now appearing in my favorite magazine, CosmoGIRL!

Jeff Yang's regular column on Asian pop culture covers those crazy otaku: Generation O

07.07.05

Here's a great article on hip hop artist Lyrics Born: Born Identity. He released a remix album, Same !@#$ Different Day, a few months back. I haven't heard it yet, but I'm sure it kicks much ass. Check out his official website: www.lyricsborn.com. Good stuff.

07.07.05

It has brought to my attention that Fisher Price has an Asian doll in its "Little People" toy line: Sonya Lee. She's a "charming, huggable, go-anywhere doll." Yay. Parents, now your kid can have a doll that looks just like her. But beware. Remember Child's Play, and its many sequels? I don't trust dolls.

07.07.05

Remember that Red Cross I mentioned back in May—the one that pictured an Asian man, and read "I don't talk like you. I don't eat the food you do. But I will give you CPR." Well, people got pretty pissed off about it and sent a lot of angry mail to the Red Cross. Fortunately, the Red Cross listened, and re-evaluated the campaign. Not only did they pull the ad, they thought up a new one featuring this guy, Alex, an Asian American Red Cross employee:



As you can see, the new copy reads, "I may not know you. I may not work where you do. But I will give you CPR." Glad to see an organization that is willing to listen to community feedback, realize they've messed up, and make positive change.

07.06.05

This is big big big trouble: US Air Force man arrested for sexual assault on 10-year-old girl in Okinawa

07.06.05

Getting the word out about a new play opening up in San Francisco this week.... Bindlestiff Studio and the Asian American Theater Company present the premiere of Sleeper (A Chronicle of the Return of the Remarkable) by Samantha Chase. Here's the official word:


Addicted to playing cards and the half-hearted pursuit of job interviews, a young woman is visited by a young man with a strange invitation: to join him as a would-be prophet. Replete with rapid-fire banter, paranormal activity, and secreted children, Sleeper is a comedic tale of a distracted writer and a long-lost brother in search of activation.


July 7 through 16 at Bindlestiff Studio in San Francisco. Go here for more details.

07.04.05

Happy Independence Day. What better way to celebrate the US of A than with some good ol' fashioned gluttony? 27-year-old, 137-pound Takeru Kobayashi of Japan won Nathan's Famous hot dog eating contest today, devouring 49 dogs in 12 minutes—his fifth straight win: Hot dog! Kobayashi wins 5th straight crown. I'm feeling kind of sick just thinking about it. Meanwhile, the runner-up was Sonya Thomas of Alexandria, VA—known as "The Black Widow" on the competitive-eating circuit—who set an American record by downing 37 hot dogs in the same 12 minutes. She weighs a mere 105 pounds. God bless America.

07.04.05

Yes, indeed, everyone is looking to China—even Hollywood: Hollywood Movie Studios See the Chinese Film Market as Their Next Rising Star

07.04.05

Whoa. Here's a situation I wasn't aware of: Asian gang violence soars in western Canada. Amongst Indo-Canadian and South Asian youth. What's up, Canada? Better watch yourself, or you might get Gale on your ass.

07.04.05

Ong-Bak kicked much ass. If you saw it, you know what I'm talking about. And if you're like me, you walked out of the theater wondering what star asskicker Tony Jaa was doing next. The guy is incredible. So... here's the official site for his next movie: Tom Yum Goong. Watch the trailer, to sample more of such asskicking.

07.04.05

Super indie indie indie Filipino American film Lumpia is now available for rental online at Blockbuster.com. Now all you lazy folks who couldn't get your hands on the DVD can just rent sucker through the mail...

07.04.05

There are a couple of South Asian scientist guys in this commercial for Dairy Queen's Dream Pie BlizzardÆ Treats: "Killer Bee". One of the scientists learns to speak bee.

07.04.05

Hey, there's an Asian person in this movie, courtesy of the French: The Beat That My Heart Skipped, a noirish crime drama. Her name is Linh-Dan Pham. Here's a review from Salon.com.

07.04.05

More on the cancellation of ABC's reality show fiasco, Welcome To The Neighborhood: 'Welcome': Whatever Was ABC Thinking?. Turns out the woman who greenlit the show over at ABC is actually Asian American—Andea Wong, head of alternative programming at ABC: ABC Gets Unfriendly 'Neighborhood' Welcome. Bad idea, lady.

07.03.05

Another story on the convenience store murder of Jae Sang Kim in Atlanta: Violence twice shatters dreams of store's owners

07.03.05

From indieWIRE, exactly what the headline says: 5 Questions for Gregg Araki, Writer/Director of "Totally Fucked Up"

07.03.05

Hate crimes. Nicholas Minucci is one of the suspects in the racially motivated baseball bat beating of a Black man in Queens. This same guy was once arrested for another bias bat attack—assaulting a turban-wearing man just hours after the September 11 attacks: Bat suspect's violent past. That's racist!

Meanwhile, another hate crime: Bias Suspected in Robbery. The assault and robbery of a 22-year-old Asian woman in Brooklyn. She was surrounded by a group of five men and two women—made up of blacks and Hispanics—who pushed her to the ground and punched and kicked her, shouting anti-Asian slurs. That's racist!

07.03.05

An interesting article on something few people get to see—everyday life in North Korea: Glimpses of a Hermit Nation

07.03.05

"Hearing about the dismantling of the Taper Labs, I am reminded that I live in a white country, and in a time of fear there is no room to be compassionate or interested in others who do not think like you." Playwright Alice Tuan on the elimination of key development programs within Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles: The reviews are already coming in (scroll down to "A glorious rainbow roll call")

07.02.05

Just in time for the 4th of July... crackdown! Over the past few years, on Chinatown's illegal fireworks trade: Illegal fireworks trade fizzles in Chinatown. Now where am I going to get my recreational explosives?

07.01.05

1000 women from more than 150 countries are jointly nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. The official nomination was submitted to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee in Oslo in January 2005. The names of the 1000 women can be found at www.1000peacewomen.org. Activist legend Yuri Kochiyama is among the 1000 nominated. She is an amazing lady.

07.01.05

Come to San Francisco's Chinatown, sample some yummy cuisine: Walking tour offers tasty food for thought. And then go buy some fake kung fu weapons on Grant Ave.

07.01.05

Welcome to July. Congratulations to Mike Kang, whose film The Motel has been honored with the 2005 Humanitas Prize in the Sundance Feature Film Category. According to the Humanitas Prize website, the award honors "excellence in film and television writing. Stories that affirm the human person, probe the meaning of life, and enlighten the use of human freedom. The stories reveal common humanity, so that love may come to permeate the human family and help liberate, enrich and unify society." Nice work, Mike. Now all of you out there, go see The Motel later this month at the 28th Asian American International Film Festival.