The is the comment I gave before the HCPSS BOE public hearing on the redistricting on September 26, 2019. It was revised a little bit.
One lady who supported the superintendent’s plan shouted to an Asian American father, in front of his two young children: “go back to Asia” on this Tuesday evening outside this building. It is so sad to see what is happening now. I feel so sorry for the family.
This kind of racist comment is hurting the community. It has been more than 10 years ago when I was shouted “go back to China” in Montgomery County by little school age kids. I have not heard that for many, many years. Now the same “go back to Asia” fell on my neighbor in Howard County in front of his young children. This is totally NOT acceptable.
There are other very
offensive comments from the opposing side too which should not be tolerated. Let’s
respect each other.
Let’s focus on the real issue here. Many schools are over-crowded. High School 13 is scheduled to come online in 2023. As the superintendent Dr. Martirano always says: all Howard County schools are great schools. However, there are still some performance differences across the board. The school system needs to find a correct, efficient and pragmatic way to address this. Unfortunately, the superintendent’s redistricting proposal has led to community pitting against each other, where division and resentment are the worst part we don’t want to see.
Everybody supports diversity, equity and inclusion. However, there are different point of views and various approaches to address the same issue that we are facing. Because we are diverse, we will have different point of views. I wish everybody understand and share this very basic philosophy and we should not expect we have a homogenous opinion.
However, how to treat the diversity as an asset, instead of creating more division, inciting anger or excitement will be a challenging task for all involved.
We will shoot ourselves on the foot if we rush to create a solution. Let’s calm down, take a step back and minimize the school redistricting impact upon on our children and community. For the good of our community, let’s take it very cautiously and seriously.
We can do
better. I believe Howard County residents have the courage and intelligence to
find a better solution.
Asian Americans will not go back, neither African Americans, white Americans, Latino Americans, nor any Americans on this free land. Instead, we should unite. Everyone of this county should try our best, devote our energy, work and build a better school system together.
Earlier this year, French supermarket Carrefour partially exited from China market due to their failure to compete with other local and international supermarket stores . This is a shock to me.
Around 20 years ago when I first visited Shanghai and went to a Carrefour store, I was shocked. There were many people in the lines and there were more than 20 checkout lines. I never saw that scale in Hefei or my hometown. When people paid 300-500 Chinese Yuan ( 40-60 US dollars) for their good just for one purchase, I spent 150 (20 US dollars) on my meal at college per month. In the past, each of their stores made a profit of more than 100 million Chinese Yuan year. However, they did not adapt to the e-commerce and competitions from other local stores, they had to sell their stores.
(New York, NY, April 7, 2019) – The members of the Committee of 100 — all United States citizens — are compelled to stand up and speak out against the racial profiling that has become increasingly common in the United States where Chinese Americans are being targeted as potential traitors, spies, and agents of foreign influence. Even as we celebrate the 30th anniversary of our non-profit organization, committed to our dual missions of a constructive U.S.-China engagement and the full equality and inclusion of Chinese Americans, our community has come under attack again. In the last few years, a few high American government officials, respected media outlets, and opinion leaders have stated or suggested that all Chinese persons in America should be suspected of wrongdoing. Overzealous criminal prosecutions in recent years of innocent individuals such as Sherry Chen and Xiaoxing Xi, like Wen Ho Lee before them, have embarrassingly fallen apart, while ruining lives for no reason. Such targeting of individuals based on their ethnic heritage or national origin violates our shared American ideals. It simply has to stop.
More than a year ago, the Director of the FBI testified before Congress to the effect that all Chinese students and researchers represented a “whole of society” threat to the American way of life. Although he had a chance to clarify, he chose to reiterate that he meant what he had said: in his eyes, every person of Chinese descent was to be distrusted. Likewise, some leading China watchers have expressed similar sentiments. They have warned that Chinese American organizations may be used by China’s government for illicit activities. The more sophisticated have disavowed any intent to stereotype. For Chinese Americans, however, the impact has already been chilling and negative: in scientific, business, political, academic and government circles, Chinese Americans are reporting being subject to greater scrutiny and discriminatory treatment in their work and daily lives. Racial profiling is wrong and un-American in our nation of democracy. It is imperative that those who are committed to the civil rights of all Americans disavow this kind of broad-brush racial stereotyping and fear-mongering.
Since normalization of relations between the United States and China four decades ago, we have witnessed an economic transformation in China never before documented in the annals of human history that has understandably led to some anxiety for Americans. There are legitimate concerns that the United States, and we, as Americans, can have and express about China’s policies and practices. There also are instances of inappropriate, even illegal, conduct by persons of Chinese heritage. The American ideal, however, is the presumption of innocence, due process, and the right of all individuals to express themselves without fear of guilt by association, especially on a racial basis.
The Committee of 100 was established in the belief that Chinese Americans could play a unique role in bridge building. As Americans who appreciate China through our heritage, we can and will continue to facilitate the constructive engagement which has defined U.S.-China relations since “ping pong diplomacy.” We will also continue to fight for Chinese American equality through civic engagement and speaking out against discrimination and injustice. By standing up and speaking out for what is right and just, Chinese Americans can help lead the way in answering the call that is always before us as Americans: to embody more perfectly the ideals and principles of this great nation we call home.
The Committee of 100 (C100) is a non-profit U.S. leadership organization of prominent and extraordinary Chinese Americans in business, government, academia, and the arts. Founded by world-renowned architect I.M. Pei and internationally acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, among others, it is an institution of U.S. citizens of Chinese heritage. For 30 years, C100 has served as a preeminent organization committed to the dual missions of promoting the full participation of Chinese Americans in all aspects of American life and constructive relations between the United States and Greater China. www.committee100.org ###