5.03.2021

"We Belong '21" by Magnetic North & Taiyo Na (feat. Ann One)

"...but we're still here; And we're going strong; And we're getting tired of proving we belong."



I'm proud to share "We Belong '21," the new track from Magnetic North & Taiyo Na, featuring Ann One.

Back in 2010, Magnetic North & Taiyo Na's "We Belong" was a rallying cry for humanity and belonging amidst the AAPI community's experiences with erasure, exclusion and absurdity. Sampling Asian American folk pioneer Chris Iijima's "Asian Song" on the chorus, the song was part of a larger thematic album Home:Word, where homeland and refuge were explored from an Asian American migrant perspective.

Unless you've been actively putting your head in the sand -- and let's face it, this is entirely possible -- you know that there's been a near-daily deluge of reports of attacks on Asian Americans. Upon hearing the details of yet another violent assault, in which the attacker told the victim, "You don't belong here," I was reminded of Iijima's lyrics: "...but we're still here; And we're going strong; And we're getting tired of proving we belong."

I begged Theresa, Derek and Taiyo to get back on the mic to record an updated version of "We Belong." It just felt like we needed it. Turns out, they were already thinking about revisiting the song in light of recent events, particularly the mass shootings in Atlanta and Indianapolis. And they have delivered.

"We Belong '21" adds layers of urgency and relevance to the original track, delving deeper into experiences of a community being appropriated and othered while pointing towards the possibilities of solidarity and action to bring us forward. The soulful Ann One lends her voice to sing Iijima's timeless words.

Listen here:

4.30.2021

They Call Us Bruce 125: They Call Us Vincent Chin

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome our good friend Paula Yoo, author of the young adult book From a Whisper to a Rallying Cry: The Killing of Vincent Chin and the Trial that Galvanized the Asian American Movement. We discuss the legacy of the case, the incredible amount of research that went into this book, and the importance of chronicling this story for younger generations.

4.23.2021

They Call Us Bruce 124: They Call Us Kelly Marie Tran

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome actress Kelly Marie Tran, who stars as the titular voice in the Disney animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon. She talks about getting her life-changing role in Star Wars, the surreal significance of playing a Disney princess, and the appropriate response to seeing yourself on a billboard.

4.16.2021

They Call Us Bruce 123: They Call Us Raya and the Last Dragon

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome screenwriters Adele Lim and Qui Nguyen, and head of story Fawn Veerasunthorn, key creators from the Disney animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon. We discuss swords, swearing, and the challenges of making a movie during a global pandemic.

4.11.2021

Read These Blogs



Keeping Love Close
What does love look like in a time of hate? Asian and Asian American photographers respond.

* * *

He Was Charged in an Anti-Asian Attack. It Was His 33rd Arrest.
Many people arrested in assaults on Asian residents in New York have had a history of mental health episodes, arrests and homelessness, complicating the city's search for an effective response.

* * *

In Response To Anti-Asian Hate Incidents, Groups Step Up Trainings For Bystanders
Hollaback! offers trainings that give bystanders tools for intervening when they see someone being harassed or disrespected, with a focus on the person experiencing the conflict.

* * *

Commentary: The casual racism of mispronouncing an Asian person's name
"Mispronouncing someone's name, accidentally or on purpose, at the very least demonstrates a selective laziness to learn the correct way to address or acknowledge a person."

* * *

A Lifetime of Reading Taught Min Jin Lee How to Write About Her Immigrant World
"I don't remember how I learned to read books in Korea or America. As a child, I couldn't speak well or find friends, but I was a very early reader."

* * *

Why So Many Asian Americans Are Learning Remotely
Asian American students are far more likely to be learning remotely than members of any other racial or ethnic group in the United States. Because of the racism.

* * *

The Bay Area town that drove out its Chinese residents for nearly 100 years
Before the white residents of Antioch burned down Chinatown in 1876, they banned Chinese people from walking the city streets after sunset.

* * *

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Hollywood Must Do More to Combat Asian Stereotypes
While progress in the portrayal of Asians is real, it has been maddeningly slow.

* * *

‘Kung Fu’ Rights the Wrongs of Its Ancestor
CW's gender-flipped martial arts reboot of Kung Fu departs from its 1970s predecessor by having a predominantly Asian American cast.

* * *

Maurene Goo Weaves a Web on All Things Cindy Moon, Journalism, and the Korean-American Identity
In celebration of Silk's grand return, acclaimed author Maurene Goo sits down with Women of Marvel to share her experience.


4.08.2021

They Call Us Bruce 122: They Call Us Rep. Grace Meng

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome Rep. Grace Meng, who represents New York's 6th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives. The congresswoman talks about taking leadership amidst tragedy in the Asian American community, seizing this moment of hypervisibility, and accepting our stories as American stories.

4.04.2021

Read These Blogs



Swelling Anti-Asian Violence: Who Is Being Attacked Where
Over the last year, people of Asian descent have been pushed, beaten, kicked, spit on and called slurs. Homes and businesses have been vandalized. The violence has known no boundaries, spanning generations, income brackets and regions. Using media reports from across the country, The New York Times attempted to capture a sense of the rising tide of anti-Asian bias nationwide.

* * *

Atlanta Spa Shootings: What Korean-Language Media Told Us That the Mainstream Media Didn't
Korean American communities in Georgia and across the U.S. have been outraged at the differences between Korean-language and English-language coverage of the mass shootings.

* * *

From colonialism to Covid: Viet Thanh Nguyen on the rise of anti-Asian violence
Anti-Asian racism is on the rise around the world. Pulitzer-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen reflects on his own experiences as a Vietnamese American – and the dark history that continues to fuel the current hate.

* * *

Three children told me and my son to 'go back to China.' Here's how I reacted.
When Michael Kurima and his family faced racism, Kurima jumped into action.

* * *

America Ruined My Name for Me
"I cannot detach the name Bich from people laughing at me, calling me a bitch, letting me know that I'm the punch line of my own joke."

* * *

Sen. Mazie Hirono Wonders How Some Republicans Live With Themselves
"Even after being elected to the Senate in 2012, the Hawaii Democrat Mazie Hirono was, by her own choosing, a politician little known outside her home state. Then, around 2016 and the election of a particularly divisive president, Hirono, who was born in Japan and is the Senate's only immigrant, decided that staying under the radar was unsustainable."

* * *

Asian American Runners Fight to Reclaim a Refuge
Amid rising racism, many have reported being slurred or coughed or spit upon on their routes in the last year.

* * *

The History of Anti-Asian-American Violence
The filmmaker Renee Tajima-Peña discusses the Atlanta shootings, the murder of Vincent Chin, and the complexities of Asian identity in the United States.

* * *

15 Asian American Children's Books to Read As a Family Right Now
"These stories recommended by Asian American children's book authors make excellent conversation starters about different cultures and the importance of respecting others."

* * *

10 Essential Podcasts From AAPI Creators
"These podcasts explore the richness and complexity of Asian American identity, and emphasize how AAPI history is integral to American history."

* * *

Catching Up With NYC's "Vaccine Daddy"
He helped thousands of New Yorkers get vaccinated. Now he's using his platform to combat anti-Asian racism.

* * *

She Never Dreamed of Acting. Now She's an Oscar Nominee for 'Minari.'
The veteran Korean star Yuh-Jung Youn has had a thriving career for five decades — all because of a choice she made when she failed her college entrance exam.

* * *

Sandi Tan "Unscares" Herself by Writing Her Worst Nightmares
The director behind Shirkers returns with a beautiful, demented, and deeply funny new novel called Lurkers.

* * *

On Building a Brighter Future, Together
Nicole Kang, Leah Lewis, Momona Tamada, and Adeline Rudolph—talented actors and close friends—came together for a roundtable discussion full of love and support about the state of Asian inclusivity in Hollywood and their hopes for what's next.


3.21.2021

Read These Blogs



A Letter to My Fellow Asian Women Whose Hearts Are Still Breaking
"Still and always, hypersexualized, ignored, gaslit, marginalized, and disrespected as we've been, I am so fortified, so alive, when I'm with us."

* * *

How Racism and Sexism Intertwine to Torment Asian American Women
Many viewed the shooting rampage in Atlanta that left eight people dead as the culmination of a racialized misogyny that they say has long been directed at them.

* * *

Racism, sexism must be considered in Atlanta case involving killing of six Asian women, experts say
While police said the suspect denied having racial motivations, experts and activists alike say it's nearly impossible to divorce race from the discourse, given the historical fetishization of Asian women.

* * *

To be an Asian woman in America
"To be an Asian woman in America means you can't just be what you are: a fully enfranchised human being. It means you are a blank screen on which others project their stories, especially, too often, their sexualized fantasies -- because US culture has long presented Asian women as sexualized objects for White male enjoyment."

* * *

The spa shootings reignited the trauma of everyday racism and misogyny
"The news brought to mind the men who have seen my Asian face, my Asian body, as something to conquer."

* * *

Column: If the mass killing of six Asian women isn't a hate crime, what is?
Let's not accept how law enforcement frames the mass killing of people of color.

* * *

Steph Cha: The Atlanta shooting is another reminder the cops are not our friends
"The police and law-and-order conservatives are always happy to use us and even protect us when it suits their needs. And although we might benefit from their attention, they don't actually care about us. The system they serve wasn't built for us. It was built for white people."

* * *

How Hollywood Is Complicit in the Violence Against Asians in America
Reducing Asians, women and sex workers to flat punchlines isn't just degrading — it's dangerous.

* * *

Why This Wave of Anti-Asian Racism Feels Different
The author Cathy Park Hong sees the recent upsurge in violence as a turning point for Asian Americans.

* * *

Asian Americans Are Being Attacked. Why Are Hate Crime Charges So Rare?
Several recent attacks have not been charged as hate crimes, fueling protests and outrage among many Asian Americans.

* * *

Recent Rise in Anti-Asian Hate Crimes Doesn't Mean Anti-Asian Racism Is New
This op-ed talks about how recent anti-Asian violence is rooted in a long history of racism and U.S. policy.

* * *

The history of tensions — and solidarity — between Black and Asian American communities, explained
How white supremacy tried to divide Black and Asian Americans — and how communities worked to find common ground.


2.21.2021

Read These Blogs



What This Wave of Anti-Asian Violence Reveals About America
"When it comes to Asian-American grief, do Americans want to know?"

* * *

For Asian Americans, Sharing Our Grief Is an Act of Revolution
With anti-Asian violence on the rise, our fierce love for our elders is compelling us to speak our truth.

* * *

This Is What No One Tells You About Being Asian In America In 2021
"We are used to minimizing our own pain because we don't want to rock the boat."

* * *

Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans Are on the Rise. Many Say More Policing Isn't the Answer
Hate crimes against Asian Americans are on the rise, and while there are a lot of possible solutions, more policing isn't the answer.

* * *

Asians Must Stop Comparing Our Issues to Black Lives Matter
"If we as Asians, in witnessing constant protests responding to anti-Black oppression and tragedy, come away with the notion that Black people are overly favored, we should consider whether we are perpetuating the very oppression we’re supposed to be fighting."

* * *

As an Asian American, I'm Tired of Being Racially Gaslit By My Peers
"Just as you ask us to hold our people accountable, we ask you to do the same."

* * *

Amid attacks, school principals concerned over Asian Americans' return to class
As heightened levels of anti-Asian sentiment continue alongside the coronavirus pandemic, racist incidents and attacks on members of the Asian American community in public have, in part, persuaded some families not to send their children back to in-person schooling.

* * *

He Writes Unreliable Narrators Because He Is One, Too
Viet Thanh Nguyen won the Pulitzer for his debut, The Sympathizer, recognition that was great for his career and bad for his writing. Now he's back with its subversive sequel, The Committed.

* * *

Bling Empire and the Energizing Potential of Asian-American Mediocrity
Jean Chen Ho explores what we gain when we give up the idea of perfect representation.

* * *

Meet NASA's Swati Mohan, star of Perseverance rover's epic Mars landing
The cool, collected play-by-play from one of the mission's leaders has observers around the world taking notice.

* * *

The Secret History of a Filmmaker's Family in "No Crying at the Dinner Table"
Carol Nguyen's short documentary is a striking depiction of what families avoid discussing, and what can happen when those taboos dissolve.

* * *

Q&A: Jeremy Lin on Finding Peace Back In the G League
The veteran guard is back where he started, fighting for an NBA roster spot with the Santa Cruz Warriors. But, as he explains, he's never felt more comfortable in his career.


2.19.2021

They Call Us Bruce 121: They Call Us Angry Asian Man

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

Happy Angryversary! In this episode, we take a moment to observe the 20th anniversary of this blog, Angry Asian Man. It's been a journey. I look back at the blog's beginnings, how I got here, and my unique view of Asian America over the last two decades.

2.14.2021

Read These Blogs



Crime, race, safety: what's really happening in Oakland Chinatown?
Assaults on Asians have sparked international outrage and been widely called hate crimes. Is there evidence that they were racially motivated? What do Chinatown stakeholders say Chinatown needs?

* * *

Rising crime, calls for solidarity: a deeper look at what's happening in Chinatown
Is crime in Chinatown really increasing? What does community solidarity look like?

* * *

I want justice for anti-Asian violence — but not at the expense of Black people
"Since the problems that engender crime stem from white supremacy, the solution isn't to implement a white supremacist policing system — it's to destroy the white supremacy that endangers all BIPOC."

* * *

My Mother Was a Victim of the Rise in Anti-Asian Crime—Here's What You Can Do to Help
Reaching out to local communities and their organizations, donating funds to families of victims, and other ways you can support Asian Americans affected by the rise of hate crimes.

* * *

I'm An ICU Doctor. I'm Haunted By What I've Seen During The Recent COVID-19 Surge.
"I can't stop thinking about the 40-something man who told me, 'I can't die like this. I just got engaged and have a 6-month-old baby.' I encouraged him to be positive, but that didn't stop him from dying two weeks later."

* * *

Whitewashing of Asian students and a report that launched a reckoning
A school district sparked fury after grouping Asian and white students together. The message was clear: 'Person of color' meant underperforming.

* * *

A Vision of Asian-American Cinema That Questions the Very Premise
Lulu Wang, Lee Isaac Chung, Bing Liu, Alan Yang, Justin Chon, Sandi Tan and Mira Nair talk forthrightly about staying true to themselves while navigating Hollywood and issues of identity.

* * *

Minari and the Real Korean American Immigrants Who Have Farmed U.S. Soil for More Than a Century
For many Korean American farmers, Minari reflected many of their experiences.

* * *

WHAT WE PLANT, WE GROW: BEHIND THE MAKING OF "MINARI"
The women behind Minari—Christina Oh (producer), Julia Kim (casting director), Kelly Park (makeup lead), Susanna Song (costume designer), and Yong Ok Lee (production designer)—share the ways they shaped this tender exploration of a Korean American family.

* * *

Minari's 8-Year-Old Breakout Star Thought Being in a Movie Would Be Kinda Nice
An interview with Alan Kim, the second-grader who made his screen debut in Minari.

* * *

Saving Face: The Half of It director's 2004 lesbian romcom debut was way ahead of its time
Alice Wu's first feature film Saving Face could have been a stock-standard star-crossed queer love story, but the Taiwanese American director had bigger ideas.

* * *

Prince From Brandy's 'Cinderella' CredMusical's Diverse Cast
Paolo Montalban reflects on playing the Asian prince opposite Brandy in 1997's Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, now streaming on Disney Plus.

* * *

Lana Condor Says Goodbye to 'To All the Boys'
Lana Condor discusses being one of the few Asian Americans to headline a rom-com and pushing to make Lara Jean more independent in To All The Boys: Always and Forever, the third and final installment of the series.


Twenty Angry Years

Happy Angryversary.



Hey, everybody! Phil here. Happy Lunar New Year. Happy Valentine's Day. And Happy Angryversary.

On this day, 20 years ago, I hit "publish" on the very first iteration of this website. I barely knew what I was doing, and I honestly didn't think anyone was going to read it, but this shiny new internet thing seemed wide open and free, so I decided to carve out a little space on it. I had no idea I was starting a thing. Two decades later, with a lot of hours and energy in between, I've found a community and a calling. That said, I've seen this day coming up on the horizon, and now that it's here, I don't know how to feel.

I feel bewildered. I know I say this every passing year, but I keep thinking I've done the math wrong. How could twenty years fly by like this? In some ways, I feel like I'm still back on my old noisy desktop monitor at the beginning of the millennium, sitting in my pajamas, coding clunky HTML. I've run this blog longer than I've done anything else. It has basically defined my adult life. In recent years, as personal and professional demands have pulled me in different directions, my time and resources have been diverted away more and more from actual blogging to podcasting, social media and other writing, but at least I can say I'm still here. But where's here?

I feel tired. Twenty years ago, I didn't know where we'd all be in 2021, but it sure as hell wasn't here. Running this blog has given me a unique vantage point. On some days, I marvel at the joys, struggles and progress of Asian America. On other days, it feels like quicksand, and I wonder if any of this is worth it. I don't have to recount what a crap collision of the time/space continuum the past year has been, or ongoing recent events that have shaken our community. It weighs heavy on the heart, I start doubting if any of this is making a difference, and I calculate the actual cost of flinging this laptop off my balcony. Also, I'm just physically tired. I need a nap.

But I also still feel hopeful. Over the years, I've seen too many heartbreaks and setbacks to count (some of them, my own) but I've also witnessed the best of our community. The people, ideas and movements that challenge and inspire me to keep this thing going. Sometimes it feels like the full-time job of being Asian American is simply convincing folks -- America, other Asians, myself -- that we exist. But Asian America is a project, and it's not yet finished. It's a work-in-progress, and it's worth it.

Most of all, I feel grateful. The last few years, I've been in the habit of asking myself "how did I get here?" The answer is you. I always say the best thing about starting Angry Asian Man has been the people it has placed in my life, friends and strangers alike. Thank you for being partners in this journey. Thank you to the loyal readers who gave me a voice and purpose. Thank you to financial backers for your faith. Thank you to colleagues and collaborators for creating something with me. Thank you to the educators, mentors and activists for lighting the way. Thank you to the ancestors for holding us on your shoulders. Special thanks to my family and loved ones who have always held my hand and had my back.

Thank you for the last twenty years. As always, stay angry.

Phil

2.07.2021

Read These Blogs



As a Chinese Sex Editor, I Have a Lot to Say About That Racist, Wrong-as-Hell Kung Fu Vagina Video
"Not only is the video highly offensive and actively perpetuating harmful stereotypes that marginalize Asian women, but many of Anami's claims are also factually, medically incorrect. As a sex and relationships editor who specializes in health reporting and who also happens to be Chinese, I'm more than happy to break down every single line of Kim Anami's racist, misinformed video."

* * *

Corky Lee 'Was Chinatown to Me'
"Over more than four decades of photography, Lee also created a definitive body of work capturing Asian American life - from the intimate moments of a restaurant worker's off hours to the grandeur of collective movement-building. He made his life a ceaseless act of creative intervention in a history shaped by erasure."

* * *

What it's like for Asian Americans to watch family enjoy 'normal' life overseas during Covid
One woman with family in South Korea said she's "jealous that they're in a place where people care about other people and take precautions." As opposed to the United States, where people... don't.

* * *

Top K-pop choreographer gives 50-something reporter a serious dance workout via Airbnb
Todd Inoue recounts taking a virtual class with a K-pop choreographer.

* * *

There's More to Bling Empire and House of Ho Than Crazy Rich Asians
A pair of streaming reality shows, Bling Empire and House of Ho, have come under fire for promoting stereotypes -- but both also go deeper into the Asian and Asian American experience.

* * *

The Many Lives of Steven Yeun
What's a typical immigrant story? In his new film, Minari, actor Steven Yeun has his own to tell.

* * *

The Truth Behind the Minari Foreign Language Film Controversy
Director Lee Isaac Chung explains why his American film Minari ended up nominated in the Foreign Language Film category at the Golden Globes.

* * *

Why Aren't More Asian-American Costume Designers Helping Tell Our Own Stories?
Asian American costume designers talk about the importance of bringing their perspectives and expertise in the effort to bring Asian American stories to life.

* * *

'I Was a Simple Man': Constance Wu, Christopher Yogi on Hawaii's Indie Film Community
"A lot of times the island is used as a pretty backdrop and the locals are at the margin," explains Christopher Yogi, the writer/director behind the Sundance dramatic competition film I Was a Simple Man.

* * *

Paul Sun-Hyung Lee on fatherhood, family, 'Star Wars' and 'Kim's Convenience'
Paul Sun-Hyung Lee has played many roles before, but his part as the patriarch of the family in Kim's Convenience was the first that truly reflected his life experience.

* * *

Randall Park talks returning to the MCU for WandaVision and perfecting his close-up magic
Randall Park returns as FBI agent Jimmy Woo in WandaVision.


2.04.2021

They Call Us Bruce 120: They Call Us Asha Rangappa

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I hos an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome former FBI agent, lawyer, CNN commentator and Yale lecturer Asha Rangappa. She talks about kicking down doors, the rise of right-wing extremism, and how a girl from Virginia became the first Indian American female agent at the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

2.02.2021

84-Year-Old Man Fatally Assaulted in San Francisco

And Other Things to Know From Angry Asian America.



Suspect arrested in deadly attack on 84-year-old man in San Francisco
San Francisco police have arrested a 19-year-old man on suspicion of murder for a vicious, unprovoked attack last week on an 84-year-old man. The attack occurred Thursday in the city's Anza Vista neighborhood. Security footage shows the suspect barreling into Vicha Ratanapakdee before taking off running. Antoine Watson was booked on suspicion of murder, elder abuse and assault with a deadly weapon. Officers also arrested 20-year-old Maylasia Goo on suspicion of being an accessory after the fact. Ratanapakdee's family believes the attack was racially motivated.

* * *



Jon M. Chu to Direct Movie Adaptation of 'Wicked'
Jon M. Chu, director of Crazy Rich Asians and In the Heights, will reportedly direct the feature film adaptation of the smash hit Broadway musical Wicked. A prequel to The Wizard of Oz the musical tells the story of everything that happened before Dorothy dropped down in Oz, focusing on best friends-turned-mortal enemies Elphaba (the eventual Wicked Witch of the West) and Glinda (the Good Witch). No word on who will star in the film, or when it will be released.

* * *


Chien-Shiung Wu Commemorative Forever® Stamp
The U.S. Postal Service is honoring Professor Emerita Chien-Shiung Wu, one of the most influential nuclear physicists of the 20th century, with a commemorative Forever stamp. There will be a virtual ceremony for the first day of the stamp's issue on February 11, via Facebook and Twitter. To find out more, visit usps.com

* * *



WiNDUP
The beautiful animated short WiNDUP, directed by Yibing Jiang, breathes life into the special bond between a father and his ailing daughter to highlight the fragile nature of life, love, and the healing power of music.

* * *


The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee
The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee, written by Julie Leung and illustrated by Julie Kwon, is an inspiring picture book biography about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the U.S. military. Description: "Hazel Ying Lee was born fearless -- she was not afraid of anything, and the moment she took her first airplane ride, she knew where she belonged. When people scoffed at her dreams of becoming a pilot, Hazel wouldn't take no for an answer. She joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots during World War II. It was a dangerous job, but Hazel flew with joy and boldness. This moving, true story about a groundbreaking figure will inspire young readers to challenge barriers and reach for the sky."

1.31.2021

Read These Blogs



Corky Lee's Photographs Helped Generations of Asian-Americans See Themselves
Legendary photographer Corky Lee, who died last week, viewed his camera lens as an extension of his activism, helping Asian Americans recognize their shared yearnings and struggles.

* * *

A Scientist Is Arrested, and Academics Push Back
Gang Chen, an M.I.T. professor, faces federal charges of hiding affiliations with China. His colleagues, and M.I.T., are publicly challenging the allegations.

* * *

What Tracy Chou learned about online harassment while building an app to solve it
Tracy Chou's new app, Block Party, aims to give people control over harassing content.

* * *

I'm A First-Generation Indian American Woman. I Married Into A Family Of Trump Supporters.
"I had so wanted to be a part of this family. But how could they love me, a brown-skinned woman, if they believed lies that placed whiteness above all else?"

* * *

Many South Asian Americans Tap Into Their Community To Kick-Start Their Political Careers
While fundraising from within the South Asian American community can boost some South Asian Americans' political campaigns, community support doesn't always guarantee success and can pose a unique set of challenges for newcomers.

* * *

The only samurai colony ever attempted outside of Japan was in California
Wakamatsu Farm was the first home of Japanese immigrant families in the United States.

* * *

Try Harder! Sundance Film Considers College Admission Bias
Debbie Lum's documentary Try Harder!, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, follows students at San Francisco's top public high school.

* * *

Kate Tsang's film debut combines 'weirdo' magic with the joy of Asian American family life
Kate Tsang, writer/director of the Sundance feature Marvelous and the Black Hole, discusses Asian American representation and sleight of hand magic.

* * *

The Downside Of Bling Empire, House Of Ho, & The New Wave Of Asian Representation
These two reality TV shows focus on wealthy Asian Americans, revealing the limitations of representation.

* * *

Chronicles of a Bubble-Tea Addict
"Boba and I spent our adolescence as scrappy, enterprising immigrants at America's periphery. For a new generation, it's a ubiquitous, Instagram-friendly mark of Asian identity."

* * *

Pork Buns Have Become an American Favorite. Why Can't We Acknowledge They're Taiwanese?
The American pork bun craze is borrowed from the Taiwanese classic, gua bao.

* * *

With His Fourth Book, Charles Yu Finally Feels Like a Writer
Interior Chinatown explores Asian American stereotypes, something that captivated novelist and TV writer Charles Yu as he thought about stars, supporting characters and who gets to play the lead.

* * *

Grace Lin was early to champion diversity in children's literature
Growing up, Grace Lin longed to find role models she could emulate in her career. "I found parts of them, but I never found one person."

* * *

He Can't Carry a Tune, but Chang-rae Lee Has a Song to Sing
Author Chang-rae Lee's sixth novel, My Year Abroad, is about letting yourself plunge into the world, even when it hurts. He's been thinking about that a lot over these past, painful months.

* * *

'I Can Be Someone I Didn't Have.' Actor Simu Liu on Asian Representation and His Marvel Future
Simu Liu stars in the upcoming Marvel film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.


1.29.2021

They Call Us Bruce - 119: They Call Us Your Korean Dad

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I hos an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

In this episode, we welcome Nick Cho, aka "Your Korean Dad" of viral TikTok fame. He talks about his journey from coffee professional to making videos on social media and becoming an affirming father figure to 2 million followers and counting.

1.24.2021

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Why aren't more Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Biden's Cabinet?
"Biden made promises along the campaign trail, but never went the full measure to build the big tent or act affirmatively beyond his comfort area. Nor did his advisors, all decent individuals, fully engage a greater circle to seek out talent beyond their frame of mind."

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Why Koreans pointed out two 'Joes' at inauguration
The last name of the head of President Biden's Secret Service detail, David Cho, is pronounced like "Jo," and Koreans had jokes.

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'She's Black and Indian Like Me': What Seeing Kamala Harris Means to 6-Year-Old Sumaya
The Singh-Sidibe family talks about the impact Kamala Harris getting sworn in.

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Prabal Gurung on What It Means To Dress Kamala Harris
Nepalese American fashion designer Prabal Gurung discusses the emotional impact of seeing America's first female, Black, and South Asian Vice President wear his designs.

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Memories of the I-Hotel
Warren Mar shares memories of the fight for the tenants of the International Hotel and coming of age in San Francisco during the radical movements of the late 1960s and '70s.

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'Our hearts are hurting': Elderly Chinese isolated as SF dim sum restaurants shutter in pandemic
Cheung Yinching and her husband discuss the meaning dim sum brings to their lives — and how the pandemic has changed their weekly tradition.

Making of 'Minari': How Lee Isaac Chung Created a Unique American Story Rarely Seen Onscreen
With a predominantly Korean American cast and crew, writer-director Lee Isaac Chung says of his film Minari, "This is probably the first time something like this could have been made."

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Riz Ahmed Makes Some Noise
With his buzzy performance in Sound of Metal -- which required him to learn sign language and drumming -- plus a new wife and a booming company, actor and rapper Riz Ahmed is having his loudest year yet.

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The Backstory 'Cobra Kai' Should Tell
Cobra Kai has given plenty of context and backstory to certain characters. Why not tell Mr. Miyagi's story?

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The Big Boss (and Bruce Lee’s cultural legacy) Turns 50
Lots of people are stars, but only a very few stars are icons.


1.17.2021

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Kamala Harris has elevated the Blindian community: ‘It’s a validation of the identity I’ve had to fight for’ With a Black father and an Indian mother, Harris is part of a group that has struggled for acceptance.

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A senator's experiences as a soldier and wheelchair user shaped her response to the Capitol riots
Senator Tammy Duckworth recounts what went through her mind as white supremacists stormed the Capitol.

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There’s a reason the South Vietnamese flag flew during the Capitol riot
In America, white nationalists and Vietnamese nationalists share a common condition: nostalgia for a lost cause.

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‘It’s Starting Again’: Why Filipino Nurses Dread the Second Wave
Indispensable to New York City hospitals, health care workers from the Philippines died in shocking numbers last spring. Will things be different this winter?

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Shake Shack catches flak for 'lazy' take on Korean fried chicken
Shake Shack is catching flak for a limited-edition menu of "Korean-style" offerings that critics say is a "lazy" interpretation of Korean fried chicken.

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What the outcry from Kumail Nanjiani's sculpted body tells us about racism, masculinity standards
On race and body shaming in celebrity culture.

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'Minari' CD Julia Kim Went to Extreme Lengths to Find the Perfect Cast
Casting director Julia Kim was tasked with assembling the Korean American immigrant family in Minari.

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Ang Lee reflects on Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 20 years later: 'I was upgrading a B-movie'
Oscar-winning director Ang Lee spoke to EW about pulling off his blockbuster wuxia epic Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon to mark its 20th anniversary.

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You Know Awkwafina, But Have You Met Nora Lum?
This year, Awkafina will star in a Marvel movie, a Disney movie, and her own Netflix show. Over a virtual slime-making session, Nora Lum opens up about family, depression, and the highs and lows of fame.

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'Bling Empire' & 'House of Ho': The Reality-Show Descendants of 'Crazy Rich Asians'
"There's the sort of wealth that buys designer clothes. Then there's the sort of wealth that shuts down Rodeo Drive for a private Lunar New Year party, has a nine-piece band and a Gucci claw machine for a 1-year-old's birthday, and takes a friend to their favorite restaurant -- in Paris -- as a treat."

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Bling Empire star Kevin Kreider can't wait to prove people wrong for calling the show 'tone deaf'
The star of Netflix's Bling Empire dishes to EW about how he met his rich friends, the castmate he "hated," and the most extravagant thing that didn't make the show.

1.10.2021

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Ted Lieu: Why we will impeach Trump a second time
"The president incited an attempted violent overthrow of Congress in broad daylight. Several people died. This was a frontal assault not only on Congress, but on our Constitution and our democracy. If the impeachment provision of the Constitution is not invoked for this situation, then what the hell is it for?"

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'It Was No Accident': Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal on surviving the siege.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal, who was in the Capitol Building during the siege, talks about the particular vulnerability of Black and brown women to violent incursion, and about how her party must now move forward, both in response to the attack and as the governing party moving into a new administration.

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Meena Harris, Building That Brand
Kamala Harris's niece is building her own empire with statement T-shirts. Just don't define her by her family.

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The Mahjong Line debacle is the latest in a long history of Asian erasure
The Mahjong Line’s "refresh" is a classic case of cultural appropriation that strips away the cultural, personal, and emotional significance of the game's roots.

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At Netflix, 'Cobra Kai' broke out. Now its whiteness is under a new spotlight
Cobra Kai comes to Netflix thirty years and several reprises after The Karate Kid, and many have been pushing for more diversity in its characters and stories.

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Seattle restaurateur Yuji Okumoto reprises a role — and a life — he thought he'd left behind
When Yuji Okumoto got the call to reprise the role of Chozen for Netflix's Cobra Kai, he was excited -- and had some things to say.

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The Partnership: Steven Yeun & Lee Isaac Chung Chart Their Own Course With 'Minari,' Examining Korean Immigrant Family's Pursuit Of The American Dream
Writer/director Lee Isaac Chung wrote his film, Minari, based on his own childhood.

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Harry Shum Jr. on 'All My Life' and Its "Big Step Forward" for Asian Americans On-Screen
"Before this, how many Asian Americans could you name in a leading romantic role?"

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Dante Basco talks Avatar reunion, Netflix live-action, and how Zuko would handle a pandemic
Dante Basco, the voice of Prince Zuko, talks about organization a Avatar: The Last Airbender cast reunion.


1.07.2021

"What else could I do?"



New Jersey Congressman Andy Kim Helps Clean Up Capitol. Literally.
Late at night, after a pro-Trump mob stormed and ransacked the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, New Jersey Rep. Andy Kim was photographed in the rotunda, crouching on his hands and knees over the debris the crowd had left behind. He was picking up the trash. "When you see something you love that's broken you want to fix it," Kim told the Associated Press. "I love the Capitol. I'm honored to be there. This building is extraordinary and the rotunda in particular is just awe-inspiring. How many countless generations have been inspired in that room? It really broke my heart and I just felt compelled to do something. What else could I do?"

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Elaine Chao Announces Resignation Over Trump's Response to Riot
File under: too little too late. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao has announced her resignation over the riot Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol. Time to jump ship, apparently. In a statement addressed to the Department of Transportation, Chao wrote that she will resign effective Monday and was "deeply troubled" by the "entirely avoidable" events at the Capitol building. What a crock of cowardly shit. The time to jump ship was to never get on board. But Chao and her ilk have propped up Trump and this garbage fire of an administration for four years. You don't get to walk away with clean hands after being complicit in ugly shit that absolutely everybody saw coming. Get the fuck out of here yesterday.

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Rep. Michelle Steel, who questioned mask mandate, tests positive for coronavirus
Rep. Michelle Steel, who previously expressed skepticism about the need for a mask mandate in Orange County, tested positive for the coronavirus on Wednesday. Steel learned that morning that she had been in contact with someone who tested positive. She sought a test in the afternoon "out of an abundance of caution," and it came back positive, according to a statement released by her office. In the spring, Steel repeatedly questioned the Orange County health office's decision to mandate face coverings countywide, but later called on residents and visitors to wear face coverings in public, when COVID cases surged. And now ya got the COVID.

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Jeremy Lin signs to play with Warriors G-League team
Before the season started, Jeremy Lin reached a deal with the Golden State Warriors that would have had him playing for its G-League team, a first step in working his way back to an NBA roster. But that fell apart because paperwork from his former Chinese team the Beijing Ducks (where he played last season) through FIBA (basketball's international governing body) did not get to the NBA in time. Lin has now signed outright to play for the Warriors' G-League team -- the Santa Cruz Warriors -- in that league's restart bubble starting next month. The dream is still alive and kicking!

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Raya and the Last Dragon Raya Pop! Vinyl Figure
In case you're a collector like me: Funko Pop! figures based on the upcoming Disney animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon are now available for pre-order. The Southeast Asian-inspired fantasy adventure, starring the voice of Kelly Marie Tran, will premiere in theaters and on Disney Plus on March 5.


1.06.2021

"What we saw... was not a protest, it was an attempted coup"

And Other Things to Know From Angry Asian America



U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth Speaks Out Against Trump Demonstrators
U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth spoke out against President Donald Trump and the demonstrators that forced their way into the U.S. Capitol building Wednesday: "What we saw today was not a protest, it was an attempted coup. I refuse to let anyone intent on instigating chaos or inciting violence deter me from carrying out my Constitutional duties. Congress must continue its work certifying the results of the election and turn the page on this shameful chapter in our history. It is the only way to inch closer to healing our nation."

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Rep. Grace Meng Shows Where She Hid Amid Violent US Capitol Protests
As the U.S. Capitol was stormed by a mob of pro-Trump protesters, New York congresswoman Grace Meng took cover for hours in a room that was barricaded shut with office chairs while rioters stormed outside. "After 5 hours I've been rescued from my hiding place. Now i can show you my DIY barricade and gas masks," wrote Rep. Meng. "Protestors were right outside the door chanting 'USA USA' it was scary but i am ok! Thanks all for your prayers."

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'I was closing my eyes and praying'
As pro-Trump mobs stormed the United States Capitol on Wednesday, forcing the building into a lockdown, U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal crouched behind a railing in the House gallery, seeking shelter from a scene that more closely resembled a terrorist attack than a peaceful transfer of power.

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Rep. Ted Lieu calls for Trump's immediate removal from office
When Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol building, California Rep. Ted Lieu tweeted that he was evacuated from the building, and called the events a coup attempt. He is calling for the immediate removal of the president. "This assault on our nation's Capitol is a coup attempt and all those involved should be prosecuted as such," he wrote. "Also, for those Dems saying we shouldn't impeach @realDonaldTrump again? You are wrong."

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Rising number of Democrats call for Trump impeachment
Rep. Judy Chu joined calls for impeachment, telling Politico that Trump's "actions qualify for treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. I really question, actually, President Trump's mental state," Chu said. "If I were a member of the Cabinet, I would invoke the 25th Amendment to remove him."


1.05.2021

Three White Women Made a Mahjong Line Nobody Asked For



Dallas company apologizes after criticism for redesigning mahjong tiles
It seems that white people, not content with bottling bad kimchee and crappy pad thai, are exploring new dimensions in cultural appropriation. The latest Asian shit stolen and made "new": mahjong, courtesy of three white ladies, who have given the game a "respectful refresh" that absolutely nobody was asking for.

The Mahjong Line, based in Dallas, was the brainchild of Kate LaGere after she "discovered" that traditional mahjong tiles had the same designs and "did not reflect the fun" she had while playing the game, according to the company’s website. Perhaps worst of all: the damn thing costs $425. I had no idea that mahjong could be gentrified. But they've done it. And the internet of Asian America has let them know accordingly. Do not mess with our shit, because we will let you know.

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Brooklyn Democratic Party Leader Resigns Over Racist Tweet
A Brooklyn Democratic District Leader has resigned her post after triggering a firestorm of criticism over a racist rant she posted against Chinese people over the weekend, including the bizarre slight: "I can't even look at Chinese food." Lori Maslow posted the comments on Twitter with a link to a news item on Chinese tariffs. It has since been deleted. On Monday, Maslow issued a statement apologizing and resigning from her position in the party: "I hereby resign from my position as 6th vice chair of the Kings County Democratic County Committee effective immediately. I sincerely apologize for the poor choice of words I used in a social media posts over the weekend, which were hurtful to members of the Chinese American Community."

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Rose Ochi, Japanese American trailblazer for civil rights, dies at 81
Rose Matsui Ochi, a trailblazing Los Angeles attorney who tapped far-flung political networks from City Hall to Congress in her fierce advocacy of civil rights, criminal justice reform and Japanese American causes, has died at 81. Ochi broke barriers as the first Asian American woman to serve as a Los Angeles Police Commission member and as an assistant U.S. attorney general. She advised L.A. Mayors Tom Bradley and James Hahn on criminal justice, served on President Carter’s Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy and worked with President Clinton on drug policy and race relations. Ochi died December 13 after being diagnosed with a second bout of COVID-19, which exacerbated existing health problems.

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