Do I count as 'Asian American'? What the history behind the term taught me
Published in Today.com on
John C. Yang, president of Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian American Justice Center quoted
The term galvanized the community once again after the 1982 killing of 27-year-old Chinese-American Vincent Chin by two white autoworkers in Detroit. The American automobile industry was being outcompeted by the Japanese, and Chin's attackers — who repeatedly struck his head with a baseball bat but didn't serve any jail time — reportedly said, "It's because of you little m—f—s that we're out of work."
"The general sentiment was that justice was not served and that the Asian American community needed to band together in a different way to have a stronger voice because everyone recognized that Vincent Chin was murdered," John Yang, president of Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian American Justice Center, recalled.
"In 1982 and thereafter, people recognized ... that lawmakers would not pay attention if it is only coming from the perspective of one specific Asian ethnicity."