« Asian American Diversity »
( 672 Words )
Although Asian American is the second fastest growing population in America after Latinos, the population percentage of Asian American in the US is still very small comparing to African Americans, Latinos and the majority Caucasian population. Asian American population in America has been small through out US history. It was not long ago that the US government lifted the quota limit on Asian immigration. Due to this fact, misconceptions about Asian Americans have continuously arisen among the general American public. “Asians are the same. They look the same. They all come from the orient. They are all Chinese” and so on. These are some examples of the popular believes. It is true that Asians share some basic fundamental beliefs. However, Asian Americans are of variety and diversity. They are rich in tradition, culture, heritage and ethnicity. As the video “My America” portraits, not only we have Chinese, but Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Pilipino and Cambodian are just as important in building our diverse Asian community in America.

Among those individuals who were featured in the film, we can find a film maker, a journalist, an actor, a soldier, an activist, a policeman, a martial art instructor, an entrepreneur, a businessman, a sewing factory worker, a rapper, a university student and pretty much people from all walks of life. We see fresh Asian immigrants, we see native born Asian Americans, and we see the lives and stories of Asian Americans across generations. No longer are we the Chinese that work in railroad construction during the gold rush, No longer are we the Japanese, or Pilipino that farm the cane fields in Hawaii. We are the Asian Americans that live our American dreams.

Victor Wong and his life is one of the most aspiring to me in this film. I felt so lucky that I am living in the modern USA where equality is a guarantee. But Victor has to fight for racial discriminations against society and against his own father in order to pursuit what he wants in life and marry his first African American wife. To me, he is a hero, a man of courage.

Mr. Choy sure is a hard working fellow. Not only he makes fortune cookie, sells fishes, he even instructs martial art and keeps order during the annual Chinese New Year parade in Chinatown, New York City. He is the representation of Asian immigrants or simply any immigrants in the sense that we all are willing and determined to work hard for a better life in America since the day we decided to start a new life in this country.

Bill and Yuri Kochiyama, a soldier and a surviving internee, have fought along side with the African American community for civil rights of the American people. They are probably one of the few Asian pioneer activists in the civil rights movement. They have devoted their life and even lost their son for the cause. I respect them and I believe our community needs more of people like the Kochiyamas.

Pang Ku Yang’s life story is the most touching of all, because it can relates to me personally and her story resembles of my aunt who is also a worker in sewing factory. As a fresh immigrant, she faces many challenges in this new environment. The language barrier, racial tension, low wages, long working hours, a disabled husband, young children and a family based solely on her support are just a series of hardships that fall on her shoulder. She can not afford to take time out of work and attend language school, so she learns English during short breaks in her work. Though she is struggling, but she is not giving up. She is a brave woman and I wish her the best.

From rich to poor, from politicians to commoners, from Cambodian to Chinese, people from all social, economic status, in all, diversity is what makes the Asian American community great. Diversity is what makes America splendid. May diversity live in harmony, may diversity enrich our world.