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VOL 30 NO 15

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

A-POP! All things Asian in popular culture » P. 8

Hit singer Jimmy Wong on Alexandra Wallace and why angry responses are unproductive By Stacy Nguyen NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY Last month, former UCLA student Alexandra Wallace posted an ill-conceived YouTube video complaining about Asian students who talked loudly on their cell phones in the library. Perhaps the moment that drew the most ire was when she pulled out her own cell phone to illustrate how Asians talk to one another. “Ching chong ling long ting tong.” Asian Americans took to the Internet to express rage through blogs, op-eds, and videos. Jimmy Wong decided to wait a few days. “I waited, so that there was time for the reactions to settle,” explained Wong, 24. “At the time, people were sending me their favorite response videos, the ones that were the most well done. But I noticed they were mostly onesided. They were angry, lashing Jimmy Wong in a screen cap of his YouTube video response to Alexandra Wallace’s controversial “Asians in the Library” rant. Wong will be {see WONG cont’d on page 15} performing in Seattle on April 14.

Nepali boy reaches life plateau by aiding other immigrants

Too many eligible Asians fail to apply for citizenship

Photo provided by Sun Life

By Vivian Po NEW AMERICA MEDIA

From left: Julie DiCarlo, assistant vice president, public relations & communications for Sun Life Financial; Miami Dolphins quarterback Chad Pennington; Bikram Subba's guest Steven Ono; Subba; and Miami Dolphins wide receiver Davone Bess. Subba took part in a national education summit in Miami in February. By James Tabafunda NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY Reaching the summit of the world’s tallest mountain in Nepal is certainly not easy. Since 1922, only

800 people have successfully scaled Mount Everest’s summit at 29,035 feet. Bikram Subba’s 8,000-mile journey from Bhutan {see BIKRAM cont’d on page 12}

LOS ANGELES — After 14 years in the United States, Jenny Yang, who came from Korea, finally attained citizenship. Soon after her citizenship ceremony in January, Yang registered to vote. “After I got my citizenship, I can vote. That is the best thing of my life,” said Yang, adding that she’s now paying more attention to current events and politics to keep herself informed as a new voter. The 49-year-old woman came to the United States in 1997 as a foreign student studying English. After two years in a community college in Los Angeles, Yang realized that there are more opportunities for her in this country than in Korea, and she decided to stay. She started working for a clothing company that sponsored her work permit, and she eventually got her green card in 2003. In the years after, Yang worked toward her dream of becoming a small business owner. She started

Jenny Yang, in a New American Media news report a coffee shop, operating under the franchise Kelly’s Coffee and Fudge Factory. Today, Yang owns two coffee shops in the Los Angeles area. However, despite rapid success in building her career, Yang waited three years to apply for naturalization. Just like many other first generation immigrants, Yang did not know where to start. “Nobody told me [anything],” {see YANG cont’d on page 4}

THE INSIDE STORY NAMES IN THE NEWS Who’s doing what in the Asian community? » P. 2

DIVERSITY MAKES A DIFFERENCE Meet the winners! » P. 9

EDITORIAL Tommy Hilfiger is racist? What? » P. 10

COMMENTARY How to be prepared for earthquakes » P. 11

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asianweekly northwest

2

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

■ NAMES IN THE NEWS

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn (left) and King County Executive Dow Constantine walk down Maynard Avenue, next to Hing Hay Park, on April 6.

Photo by Rebecca Ip/SCP

April 6: McGinn and Constantine stroll together for City–Council Walk

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and King County Executive Dow Constantine teamed up for the kick-off of the Let’s Move! National Start Walking Day City-Council Walk. The walk is also part of King County Walks Week 2011, April 4 to April 8. Walks Week participants can sign up through King County’s website and earn prizes by walking. The mayor and county executive’s route started around noon at City Hall and continued through Chinatown before circling back to City Hall. Others involved with the event included King 5’s Rich Marriott and King County Councilmember Joe McDermott. 

March 22: Local company Questkids Clothing accepted into Macy workshop

As the result of a nationwide search, local company Questkids Clothing will be heading to New York City to join 19 other companies in a Macy’s workshop, which provides multicultural and/or women-owned business owners tools to better succeed and sustain growth in the retail industry. Binh Nguyen The 4.5 day training course will end with a capstone presentation by which each company will present their product line to Macy’s executives to determine viability of doing business with Macy’s. Questkids was created in 2006 and is owned by Vietnamese American Binh Nguyen. Nguyen gives back by donating a portion of his company’s proceeds to children affected by cancer. 

March 20–April 25: ‘Chinese Van Gogh’ brings exhibit to Seattle

major at the Beijing Arts and Crafts Institute. Due to his use of vivid images and bold colors, he is known as the Chinese Van Gogh. Twenty-one of Ren’s paintings are on display at the Wallingford Center (1815 45th St., Seattle) until April 25. The main intent of the exhibit is to display ancient Chinese opera characters in the form of Chinese painting. 

March 25: Bellevue Arts Museum displays work of Wanxin Zhang and John Cederquist at Finally Friday

One World Taiko performs for a crowd outside the Bellevue Arts Museum during its Finally Friday event. Photo by Andrea Butler/Team Photogenic To kick off its new exhibits, Bellevue Arts Museum (BAM) held its Finally Friday event, which featured performances from One World Taiko, the Chinese Dance Academy, Ying Dung Lion Dance Team, Northwest Wushu, and a fashion show from designers from the Art Institute of Seattle. BAM currently has two Asian-oriented exhibits: sculptures by Chinese artist Wanxin Zhang and Japanese-inspired fine art furniture by John Cederquist. 

Zhixian Ren, standing in front of his work Zhixian Ren, a Chinese-born artist, was a sculpture

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

■ COMMUNITY NEWS

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

3

Minority real estate leaders say government failing to meet the needs of multicultural home buyers 

In March, the nation’s three largest organizations representing multicultural real estate professionals called for policy makers to do more for minority homebuyers. This call to action comes after the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA), National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP), and National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) met in Washington, D.C., to discuss regulatory and policy changes to preserve access to homeownership for people of color. “Overwhelmingly, the members of our three organizations agree that the lack of mortgage financing is the single biggest challenge facing minorities who want to buy homes,” said Kenneth Li, AREAA chairman. “The government’s housing recovery efforts have not gone far enough to improve the situation facing minority homeowners.” At the Multicultural Real Estate & Policy Conference in Wash-

ington D.C., held on March 3 and 4, members of the AREAA, NAHREP, and NAREB were surveyed on their views of the home buying market and economic recovery efforts. According to the survey results, nearly 80 percent of the attendees responded that they believe that the current policy efforts have done little to improve the situation facing minority homebuyers. Attendees also felt strongly that an active secondary market role is needed by the government. To stabilize the home buying market for minorities, the organizations issued a joint report entitled “The Five Point Plan: Refocusing the Future of Minority Homeownership.” Specifically, The Five-Point Plan calls for: — A balanced regulatory approach that will support and encourage sustainable homeownership for qualified and responsible consumers seeking to purchase a home;

— Increased diversity in the financial services arena and adequate oversight of minority business utilization and senior management hires; — Maintaining strong government support of the secondary market system, which includes the broad network of primary lenders, government-supported securitization agency, and FHA and collectively works to broaden credit availability for all communities at all times; — Strong consumer protection oversight to restore consumer and market confidence in homeownership; — Mandatory financial education for all first-time homebuyers that prepares them for the responsibilities, risks, and rights associated with homeownership.  Visit  www.areaa.org,  www.nahrep.org, or  www.nareb. com for more information.

Report reveals state budget cuts exacerbate racial disparities A new report, “The Color of Cuts: The Disproportionate Impact of Budget Cuts on Communities of Color in Washington State,” written by the Washington Community Action Network and endorsed by 64 community organizations, reveals that people of color in Washington are bearing the brunt of state budget cuts. Community groups representing communities of color, immigrants, labor, faith-based groups, and social justice organizations released the report at the International Community Health Services Clinic, a clinic that has suffered many budget cuts and serves predominantly immigrant, Asian American, and Pacific Islander communities in Seattle. The Color of Cuts analyzes how the recently passed supplemental budget and the governor’s proposed biennial budget impact racial equity in Washington. With Census data showing significant increases among Asians, Latinos, African Americans, Native Americans, and immigrants, the Color of Cuts highlights the many budget cuts communities have suffered this year and how cuts put the quality of life of thousands of Washingtonians at risk. “In order to eliminate racial disparities in our state, lawmakers must consider how their decisions affect all communities. The Color of Cuts is a tool to help lawmakers craft the biennial budget,” said Dorry Elias-Garcia of the Minority Executive Directors Coalition. “With Washington becoming more diverse, eliminating programs that help people of color stay healthy and thrive undercuts our long-term economic success as a state.” Community members present at the event shared personal stories of how the budget cuts are hurting their children and their families. “I am a mother of two and my daughters’ future hangs in the balance as lawmakers work on the biennial budget. Both of my girls rely on food assistance and Apple Health to stay healthy. Recent budget cuts have put at risk what little we have,” said Dara Kommavongsa, Washington Community Action Network member. “We are not alone in this. Many people of color are going through what we’re going through and it needs to stop.” The Color of Cuts report calls on lawmakers to pursue budget solutions rooted in promoting racial equity in Washington. Among the recommendations is rejecting cuts and policies that widen or worsen racial disparities, and supporting proposals that increase transparency in state tax loopholes and raise revenue to protect vital services. Teresita Batayola, executive director of the International Community Health Services Clinic, shared how budget cuts are affecting patients at her clinic. “Roughly 55 percent of our patients on Basic Health have lost coverage and 50 percent of patients who relied on adult dental health services have lost coverage except for emergency care.

Budget cuts are devastating our patients and our communities.” 

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asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

■ NATIONAL NEWS

Decades later, U.S. survivors recalls Philippine internment camp FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — The rescued and their rescuers are remembering a World War II internment camp in the Philippines. Former members of the 44th Battalion and former captives of the Santo Tomas internment camp have gathered over the years in different communities to tell their stories. This year, the group met Saturday in Farmington. A handful of the elderly men posing for pictures were World War II veterans, but most were men and women rescued from the detention center at the Santo Tomas University campus on Feb. 3, 1945, the Daily Times of Farmington reported Sunday. Many of the former prisoners recalled the sound of the Americans coming, the glow from their artillery fire, and

the rumble of tanks. They also talked about life at the campus-turned-prison, which held about 4,000 people. Ed McCreary, a senior in high school at the time of the Japanese invasion, said his father had been stationed in the Philippines in 1941. When war began in Europe, many of the 20,000 other Americans in the Philippines left. “The rest of us were thrown into prison camps,” McCreary told the gathering. Men, women, and children from the United States, Europe, and Australia were crammed together, separated by sex. Hierarchy and status disappeared. “Everybody just became who you are,” said McCreary, who spent more than three years at the prison. The last months were the worst, he said, with people

getting about 600 calories a day, the equivalent of less than a scoop of ice cream. “People were hungry in the morning. They were hungry at night. They were hungry in their sleep,” he said. Richard Laurence, who was 6 when his family was imprisoned, remembered his mother slowly cutting a can of Spam into slices one Thanksgiving, cutting enough to share with a neighboring widow. “Now, we all know what a can of Spam looks like, but it was beautiful,” he said. Another time, his family found a banana tree. “We ate the bananas, we ate the tree, we ate the root,” said Laurence. 

{YANG cont’d from page 1}

state’s population, but the presidential election in 2008 indicated that only 10 percent of the electorate was AAPI. In other words, Kwoh said, there is a huge civic engagement gap between the actual AAPI representation in the state and its electorate. Stewart Kwoh To close the gap, the Asian American and Pacific Islander Naturalization Network (AAPINN) has launched a statewide campaign to encourage Asian American and Pacific Islander immigrants in California to become citizens, as a first step to becoming registered voters. The network consists of Kwoh’s group APALC and other statewide AAPI community-based organizations. A key part of the campaign, Kwoh said, is to organize six citizenship workshops between now and November: in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Orange County, San Jose, Fresno, and San Francisco. At the all-day sessions, immigration attorneys, legal experts, and language support personnel will provide counseling and help immigrants fill out their paperwork.

APALC staff attorney Connie Choi said workshops would be very helpful in addressing the three main obstacles AAPI face in gaining citizenship — language barriers, limited access to affordable legal services, and high fees — because legal services would be provided in multiple Asian languages and free of charge. Individuals would also be screened to see if they qualify for any fee waivers and exemptions. Choi said immigrants who receive federal benefits, who live below federal poverty guidelines, or who can prove financial hardship, could apply for a fee waiver. Choi reminded green card holders that under the current anti-immigrant climate, there are some benefits to citizenship, including access to public services that are being scaled back for green card holders, and avoiding deportation. “But I think the main reason is people want to become fully integrated into the American society,” she said. “They want to give back to their community.” 

said Yang, noting that her attempts to get help from Korean American community organizations proved frustrating after she got “different answers” to her questions. Yang finally sought help from the Asian Pacific American Legal Center of Southern California. An attorney there guided her through the naturalization process. Yang said it was actually simpler than she thought. Yang was not the only one who delayed the application for U.S. citizenship. More than 800,000 Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in California are eligible for citizenship but are not yet naturalized, according to a 2008 report issued by Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees. “If we even got half of [them naturalized], we could change the whole electorate landscape of California,” said Stewart Kwoh, president and executive director of Asian Pacific American Legal Center of Southern California (APALC), a long-time legal services provider and a civil rights organization for Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI). Citing 2010 Census data, Kwoh said, AAPIs are the fastest growing group in California, making up 15.5 percent of the

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

■ WORLD NEWS

5

Oscar winner sees boom coming for Chinese documentaries By Min Lee THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

HONG KONG (AP) — China is seeing a boom in documentary making with the spread of digital cameras and the wealth of issues arising from the country’s rapid modernization, Oscar-winning filmmaker Ruby Yang said. The Chinese American filmmaker, who won an Academy Award in 2007 for her documentary short “The Blood of Yingzhou District,” said screenings of Chinese documentaries were still rare when she moved to Beijing from the San Francisco area in 2004. “Now, I’ve seen many young independent documentary filmmakers, their work being shown overseas, in Europe, in New York,” Yang told students after a screening of her new film, “The Warriors of Qiugang,” at the University of Hong Kong. She added that even large commercial studios are getting into the act, with Shanghai Media Group giving grants to young documentary makers. “It’s very alive. I think it’s a great time to do documentaries in China because China is changing so quickly. There

are so many subjects that one can do,” Yang said. “The quality of the films has improved a lot and there’s quite a bit of [financial] support from even inside of China and outside of China for these filmmakers.” Yang’s recent work has examined a range of social issues. “The Blood of Yingzhou District” focused on discrimination against rural Chinese children who lost their parents to AIDS. “Tongzhi in Love,” released in 2008, portrayed the plight of Chinese homosexuals dealing with conservative parents. “The Warriors of Qiugang,” which was nominated for an Oscar for the best documentary short this year, follows a rural Chinese village’s successful campaign to evict a polluting chemicals factory. Yang’s latest film was screened for the villagers it depicts and for environmental activists, but like many Chinese documentaries, the film didn’t receive a commercial release. However, she said it has been illegally uploaded to several video-sharing websites. Despite the limited exposure of the film, the Oscar nomination still drew government attention, with Chinese officials sending cleaners to spruce up Qiugang Village and

clear out the old factory site, as well as pledging 200 million Chinese yuan ($30 million) to cleaning up a nearby waterway, Yang said. “They are very conscious of their image in the West,” she said. Yang, who edited the feature films “Xiu Xiu, The Sent Down Girl” and “Autumn in New York,” both directed by actress Joan Chen, said she plans to make short films about Chinese activists and also hopes to direct a feature film. She was also asked about her use of computer animation and comic-style graphics in “The Warriors of Qiugang” to depict events that she could not shoot — such as the lush fields of Qiugang before it was polluted and protests staged by the villagers. “I think nowadays, people are getting very sophisticated, audiences are getting sophisticated, and there are many ways to represent a story — as long as you are true to the facts,” Yang said.  For more information, visit www.warriorsofqiugang.com.

Myanmar warns no ‘decadent’ dress for its New Year’s celebrations YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Revelers who wear “decadent” clothing during Myanmar’s upcoming New Year’s celebrations can face up to a month in prison, a news report said Sunday. The four-day festival begins April 13 and marks the traditional New Year on the lunisolar calendar that is also used in Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia. It’s one of the few times when Myanmar’s citizens can cut loose under the watchful eye of the repressive regime. Revelers in the impoverished country splash one another with water and dance in the streets, despite annual warnings of proper etiquette from the government. Myanmar was under military rule for 50 years. Following elections last year, the junta was officially disbanded and handed power to a nominally civilian government, but the rules for partying during the New Year’s celebration remain unchanged. The News Watch journal, a weekly magazine, issued the

government’s warning for merrymakers to “avoid wearing dress that is contrary to Myanmar culture.” It said that a special committee will supervise what people are wearing and will use CCTV cameras to videotape crowds. Those caught “wearing decadent attire” can face a fine and up to one month in prison, the weekly reported. It did not specify what clothing was banned, but government warnings in the past have called on women to not wear skimpy tank tops and short shorts. Past warnings have also told revelers to avoid making remarks that could hurt national unity, not to honk horns, and to avoid horseplay that could injure people, like throwing bags filled with ice. A more detailed list of this year’s rules is expected to be printed in state-run media in the coming days. Myanmar, which has been ruled by the military since 1962 and is also known as Burma, held its first elections in 20 years in November, though there has been little

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asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

■ COMMUNITY CALENDAR FRI 4/8

WHAT: Boreth Ly speaks at UW, “The Poison Cure: Prevailing of the Serpent as an Embodiment of Khmer (Cambodian) Ethnic and National Identity at Home and in the Diaspora” WHERE: University of Washington, Communications 120, Seattle WHEN: 7 p.m. SUGGESTED DONATION: $15 RSVP: www. youthultimateproject.org

THRU 4/9 WHAT: Plate of Nations, 12 outstanding independently and locally-owned eateries participate in 12-day eating tour WHERE: Up and down Martin Luther King Jr, Way S in the valley COST: $15–$25 group meal deals INFO: 206-723-4666, julie@ nvnorthwest.com, www. plateofnations.com

SAT 4/9 WHAT: Zumba for Japan, a fundraising event WHERE: Highland Community Center, 14224 Bel-Red Road, Bellevue WHEN: 2–4 p.m. SUGGESTED DONATION: $20/person INFO: www.peacewindsamerica. org

WHAT: Seattle Asian Art Museum’s Saturday University, “Struggles of Central Asia Since Independence” WHERE: Seattle Asian Art Museum, 1400 E. Prospect St., Seattle WHEN: 9:30–11 a.m. COST: $5–$10 INFO: 206-442-8480, www. seattleartmuseum.org/ gardnercenter WHAT: Annual Dinner and Auction to celebrate the accomplishments of our youth – our future leaders and the next chapter of the Asian Pacific American history WHERE: Sheraton Seattle Hotel, 1400 6th Ave., Seattle WHEN: 6–9 p.m. INFO: 206-623-5124 extension 107, www.wingluke. org/2011auction

TUE 4/12 WHAT: The Rainier Valley Community Development Fund’s public meeting WHERE: Filipino Community Center, 5740 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S., Seattle WHEN: 5–7 p.m. INFO: 206-412-3187, trangdtu@ clearwire.net

FRI 4/15 WHAT: Uwajimaya Bellevue’s new location’s grand opening WHERE: Uwajimaya Bellevue, 699 120th Ave. N.E., Bellevue WHEN: 6 p.m. INFO: www.uwajimaya.com

WHAT: “Pictures at an Exhibition,” a unique multimedia presentation with music in collaboration with Seattle’s Asian Community WHERE: Nordstrom Hall at Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., Seattle WHEN: 7:30 p.m. TICKETS: $19–$29, www. nwsinfonietta.org, 866-833-4747

WHAT: Solid Ground Benefit for the Mikawa Family displaced by Japan’s Tsunami WHERE: Freehold Studio Theatre, 2222 2nd Ave., Ste. 200, Seattle WHEN: 6:30 p.m. INFO: 206-913-7876, www. freeholdtheatre.org

SAT 4/16

THRU SUN 4/17

WHAT: Gregg Nokes’ 2011 personal appearance for his book, “Massacred for Gold: The Chinese in Hells Canyon” WHERE: Klondike Gold Rush National Park, 319 2nd Ave. S., Seattle WHEN: 2 p.m. INFO: www.massacredforgold. com

WHAT: Exhibit of Home Revealed: Artists of the Chinatown-International District, the work of seven artists: Zuolie Deng, Kikuko Dewa, Andrew Hida, Meng Huang, Alan Lau, Amy Nikaitani, and Dean Wong WHERE: Wing Luke Asian Museum, 719 S. King St., Seattle WHEN: First Thursday, 12/2 at 10 a.m.–8 p.m. INFO: 206-623-5124, www. wingluke.org

WHAT: Seattle Asian Art Museum’s Saturday University, “Creating Community Solutions to Rural Issues in Central Asia” WHERE: Seattle Asian Art Museum, 1400 E. Prospect St., Seattle WHEN: 9:30–11 a.m. COST: $5–$10 INFO: 206-442-8480, www. seattleartmuseum.org/ gardnercenter WHAT: Book Reading with Karen Tei Yamashita, “I Hotel” WHERE: Wing Luke Asian Museum, 719 S. King St., Seattle WHEN: 4 p.m. COST: Free INFO: 206-623-5124 extension 119, achinn@wingluke.org

THRU SUN 4/24 WHAT: “Blossom: Develop. Mature. Thrive.” exhibit, featuring contemporary Asian inspired works by Northwest artists WHERE: Seattle Center, Northwest Craft Center, 305 Harrison St., Seattle INFO: 206-728-1555, www. northwestcraftcenter.com

THRU SAT 4/30 WHAT: “Sex in Seattle 19,” an ongoing play: The One that Got Away, by Kathy Hsieh WHERE: Richard Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave., Seattle WHEN: 8–10 p.m. COST: $6–$15, 206-3239443, tickets@sis-productions. org, brownpapertickets.com/ event/156456 INFO: pr@sis-productions.org, www.sexinseattle.org

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

7

Your ancestors sacrificed for you to be here today. Live your best life and help the next generation with your college education. — Cassandra ManuelitoKerkvliet President, Antioch University

Remember who you are and your roots. Stay focused, be persistent, and “pay it forward” by being a mentor or community volunteer. — Christine Katayama Professor of Education, City University

Our diversity is our strength. As we face an uncertain future, we need, more than ever, an inclusive, more equitable society where everyone can contribute, every voice is heard and every life counts. — Mark Mitsui President, North Seattle Community College

By making education after high school a priority and working to complete a two year degree or higher, you are more likely to become an actively engaged citizen, improve your ability to find employment, and enjoy more financial security. — Jean Hernandez, President, Edmonds Community College

Schools must open their doors to a diverse student body so that everyone has a chance to fulfill their dreams. — Mark C. Niles Dean, Seattle University School of Law

Opening your heart and mind to the world opens a world of possibilities. — Lee Lambert President, Shoreline Community College

“If you don’t like the way the world is, change it. Just do it one step at a time.” (Quoting Marian Wright Edelman) — Jill Wakefield Chancellor, Seattle Community College

Embracing a diversity of perspectives leads to wise decisions. — Pamela Transue President, Tacoma Community College

As president of the most diverse college or university in Seattle, we at South are committed to not only getting students in the door, but across the stage at graduation! Success matters! — Gary Oertli, President South Seattle Community College

Circumstances make us feel as if the story has been written for us. Education gives you a chance to rewrite your own story. — Susan Enfield, Superintendent of Seattle Public School

Opportunities surround you. Don’t wait for someone to present them to you. — Kathi Hiyane-Brown, President , Whatcom Community College

Never underestimate the power of your will. You need to will your success and happiness. — Rachel Solemsaas Vice President, Bellevue Community College

This pictorial was sponsored by the local men and women in our community

wise words from wise educators


asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

■ ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Another whitewashed cast A monthly column about all things Asian in popular culture

A screen cap from the “K-Town” trailer

Vanessa Hudgens

Jamie Chung

Lady Gaga

By Vivian Nguyen NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY

bauchery, girl-on-girl kissing, and drama among young Asian Americans. Set in the Korea Town neighborhood of Los Angeles, the reality show aims to smash the idea that Asians are the model minority by depicting them as hardcore, hedonistic party-goers. Fans of MTV’s reality show “Jersey Shore,” modeled after the same premise but with young Italian Americans, will sure enjoy this trainwreck — if a network ever decides to pick up the pilot.

has already launched social media campaigns protesting the studios’ decision to cast a white lead. This situation is history repeating itself. Do studio executives not remember the public fallout after action-adventure movie “The Last Airbender” casted

Asians and Lady Gaga go head-to-head over the singer’s latest song

Pop superstar Lady Gaga released her song “Born This Way” as the lead single from her second studio album of the same name. Though most fans have embraced the song, the Korean all-girl pop group SNSD slammed Lady Gaga for allegedly ripping off the beat from their single “Be Happy.” The two songs sound alike, but honestly, they both sample beats from Madonna’s iconic 80s single, “Express Yourself.” Can we just agree that neither Lady Gaga nor SNSD is innocent, or  original,  in this situation? Koreans aren’t the only Asians to have a beef with Lady Gaga. The lyrics in “Born This Way” encourage acceptance of people despite their ethnicity or sexual orientation. However, radio stations in Malaysia have censored a specific line in the song positively highlighting LGBT people, “No matter gay, straight, or bi, lesbian, transgendered life, I’m on the right track, baby.” In a statement to The Associated Press, AMP Radio Networks, Malaysia’s top private radio operator, said that Lady Gaga’s lyrics in “Born This Way” were considered “offensive when viewed against Malaysia’s social and religious observances … the issue of being gay, lesbian, or [bisexual] is still considered ‘taboo’ by general Malaysians.” Radio stations in the Philippines have also censored the song for the same reason. It is no surprise that these Asian countries are more conservative than their Western counterparts regarding these social issues. But I’m still disappointed that they felt the need to edit a song that promotes love and tolerance for a minority group.

A new trailer emerges for TV reality show on Asian American partygoers

After first making its rounds on the news outlets back in 2010, the much hyped reality show “K-Town” resurfaced recently with a short video promising alcohol-fueled de-

Asians shunned and featured on the big screen

March ushered in new movies featuring several Asians in silver screen roles. The action-fantasy film “Sucker Punch” includes half Filipina American Vanessa Hudgens of “High School Musical”— though she may be better remembered for her naked photos scandal — and Korean American Jamie Chung, best known for her days on MTV’s now defunct reality show, “The Real World: San Diego.” Despite its stunning special effects and action sequences, reviews have been poor for “Sucker Punch.” But that won’t stop me from catching it while it’s in theaters! I’ll see it at matinee price, of course. Freida Pinto, the Indian romantic lead from the Academy Award winning film “Slumdog Millionaire,” stars as a Palestinian teen in the biographical political film “Miral.” In an interview with USAToday. com, Pinto praised the film, saying it was an outlet to showcase her acting chops. Congrats, Freida. Here’s to hoping you find more roles to sink your teeth into in the future. Film production companies Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures stroked the ire of Asian Americans when they announced that their script for the live-action adaptation of the Japanese manga comic “Akira” was sent to a short list of actors for the film’s lead — all of whom are white. Although the characters will retain their original Japanese names, the screenplay will take place in a neo-Manhattan setting to accommodate racial differences. Racebending.com, a website that fights for equality in the entertainment industry,

Japanese cover of Akira Volume 1

Freida Pinto in “Miral”

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

■ EDUCATION

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

9

Does diversity makes a difference? These students think so

High school students blazing the path for diversity were honored at the 17th annual Diversity Makes a Difference Scholarship Awards Gala on April 1. The event was held at New Hong Kong Restaurant, where families and supporters gathered to celebrate the accomplishments of more than 60 student nominees. Hosted by the Northwest Asian Weekly Foundation, the Diversity Makes a Difference scholarship program celebrates young people who actively unite cultures in their local community. A judging panel selected five winners, four of whom received $1,000 scholarships. One received $1,200. Finalists received $200 scholarships. Master of ceremonies Enrique Cerna, an award-winning news producer and reporter for KCTS, opened the evening by commenting on the nominees’ willingness to break down cultural barriers. “This evening, we will celebrate young people committed to making a difference across cultural lines. Diversity enriches our community,” said Cerna. “The Foundation, through this program, encourages young people to take action to instill this belief in others.” Following Cerna’s introduction, Dr. Jill Wakefield, chancellor of Seattle Community Colleges, took the stage as the gala’s keynote speaker. With graduation around the corner for many of the nominees, Dr. Wakefield emphasized how students should take their time in exploring career aspirations and interests during college. “Don’t have such great plans that you miss opportunities along the way,” said Dr. Wakefield. “It’s good to be open about where life can take you … and to be aware of the opportunities that come.” She highlighted the importance of community college as a safe place for students to discover their passion before enrolling in four-year universities. Dr. Wakefield also dispensed advice about the college experience — about participating in extracurricular activities, about truth in the freshman 15 weight gain, and about having fun in school. Assunta Ng, publisher of Northwest Asian Weekly and the Seattle Chinese Post, thanked the nominees for their contributions. She also urged students to not take their nominators — comprised of teachers from their respective schools — for granted. “Don’t forget to send your counselors and teachers thank you cards!” she urged, playfully. Cerna then announced the names of the nominees present at the gala. The nominees walked up to the stage and posed for a group photo.

Winners and presenters, from left: Winner Christina Mae Boettcher, Pemco’s Michelle Sievers, State Farm’s Angie Roarty, winner Suman Panwar, winner Yemesrach Demissie, Seattle School Boardmember Sheryl Carr, entrepreneur Thach Nguyen, former NBA player James Donaldson, winner Jonnathan Yepez-Carino, and winner Mia Stroutsos. Carino is not eligible to apply for financial aid from Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

{see DIVERSITY cont’d on page 12}

THE BIGGEST AND BEST

The winners

Winner Christina Mae Boettcher, a senior at Olympia High School, leads the Bear Crew at her school, a group that links incoming freshmen to older students who help them navigate through the trials of entering high school. She also founded Bear Crew II, by which students with special needs are paired with students in basic education to attend school activities. Boettcher has provided specialized training for club members in using peoplefirst language and promoting social interaction for students with disabilities. She has wanted to create a more inclusive school community. Boettcher hopes to explore a career in special education. “I’m inspired by my sister who has Down syndrome and my mom’s work in special education,” said Boettcher. “You could say working in special education runs in my family.” She is waiting to hear back from several universities before she makes a decision about which one to attend. Jonnathan Yepez-Carino, a senior at Mariner High School, advocated for the Latino Student Union at his school to help create awareness of the issues, struggles, and needs of Latino students in high school. He also engaged his fellow Latino schoolmates to get involved in after-school activities and to make high school a safer place for them. He spoke at the University of Washington about uniting Latinos in our region to create mentoring connections between students. As a 1079 (undocumented) student, Yepez-

Photo by George Liu/NWAW

By Vivian Nguyen NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY

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asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

OPINION

■ EDITORIAL Tommy Hilfiger is racist? Are you sure? This week, we received a news tip in the form of an e-mail. The e-mail was basically regarding how the Tommy Hilfiger clothing brand should be boycotted because its designer, Hilfiger, is racist. Apparently, Hilfiger was slated to appear on the “Oprah Winfrey Show” in the 1990s, but he was kicked out after Winfrey asked him if he made statements like, “If I’d known African Americans, Hispanics, Jewish, and Asians would buy my clothes, I would not have made them so nice. I wish these people would not buy my clothes, as they are made for upper class white people.” He apparently said yes, he did make such statements. Something about the e-mail was fishy. Why would a well-known public figure commit career suicide by telling media queen Oprah Winfrey — who also happens to be Black — that his clothes are not for

people like her? So we looked into this. Turns out that this was a hoax from as far back as the mid-1990s. In 1996, a news article was published in a Philippine tabloid, quoting Hilfiger as saying that he wished people of Asian descent wouldn’t wear his line. This resulted in a loud call for boycotting Hilfiger clothing and products. Hilfiger had always denied the claims, but generally, people didn’t believe him. In 1999, Winfrey also spoke out against the rumor, stating, “I want to set the record straight once and for all. The rumor claims that clothing designer Tommy Hilfiger came on this show and made racist remarks, and that I then kicked him out. I just want to say that this is not true because it never happened. Tommy Hilfiger has never appeared on this show. … I’ve never met Tommy Hilfiger.” Hilfiger finally did appear on Winfrey’s

■ PUBLISHER’S BLOG Don’t assume your help is not wanted

Lee Hamilton is folding devil and dragon origami

Not one donation box for Japan’s disaster relief was found at the Cherry Blossom Festival (CBF), which was held at the Seattle Center last weekend. There was not one display of the photos from the earthquake or on

the tsunami’s impact on Japan. At the festival’s reception, hosted by the Consul General of Japan Kiyokazu Ota at his residence on April 2, I asked him about the recent disaster relief in Japan. “People think that Japan does not need any donations,” I said.  “The Japanese government has not appealed to the world for help.” Besides, Americans assume that Japan is a wealthy country. “No, no, no,” said Ota. “We welcome donation. We appreciate donations. Legally, government officials cannot ask people for money. I cannot ask people for money. If money is given to the government, it has to be taxed.” Ota said the government does not have the infrastructure to handle donations. The best way is to give to the Japanese Red Cross or the American Red Cross, he added. That explains why the Consul General has been reluctant to attend fundraising events directly benefiting Japan’s disaster relief. Ota also said many foreigners want to go to Japan to volunteer to help, but it is not that simple. “The roads for the disaster regions have not been repaired [yet],” he said. “There’s no access [to those areas].” The affected areas have no roads, food, water, housing, bathroom, or electricity. Only Japanese soldiers and police are able to work through those parts of the country because they are trained to survive in extreme conditions, he said. 

A star that towers above the crowd

show in 2006, partly to address the rumors that had plagued him for more than 10 years. He said that he actually hired investigators to find out where the rumors originated. They traced the rumors back to a college campus, but they were unable to find more specific information. On the show, Hilfiger said, “It hurt my integrity, because at the end of the day, that’s all you have. And if people are going to challenge my honesty and my integrity and what I am as a person, it hurts more than anything else. Forget the money that it has cost me.” Hilfiger is the founder of a summer camp for inner city children and is one of the driving forces behind the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Fund, according to Winfrey’s website. Now, this editorial isn’t meant to definitively declare that Tommy Hilfiger is not

crowd. At 7’4”, the ceiling above the New Hong Kong Restaurant’s stage was almost not high enough for James. His head touches it if he stands up straight. He was there to present to one of the winners at the Diversity Makes a Difference Scholarship Gala on April 1. High school students from all over Western Washington just swarmed around him for photos and autographs. Many of James Donaldsons shakes the hand them will be the first of Holy Names Academy students in their family to go to college. For others, it was their first time meeting an NBA star.   

Journalist was a failing student? I have never met a TV anchor who had the guts to tell a group of strangers that, in his first semester of college, his GPA was 0.93. This is Enrique Cerna’s story. Cerna is the director of production and an anchor for KCTS. Not only did Enrique graduate, he graduated with a decent GPA of 3.14. Today, he is an esteemed journalist who gets to interview many promEnrique Cerna inent people. So guys, if you have not achieved this year, don’t give up. Just get up and rebound as quickly as you can.   

racist. The point is that we just don’t know. What we do know is that there is nothing in his public persona that should lead us to believe that he is racist. If anything, the rumor seems to have really hurt him. It’s sad that, over the years, he’s publicly stated, again and again, that the rumors aren’t true, but people generally are unhearing. It’s also interesting that the hoax e-mail is still alive and circulating, 15 years after it was conceived. The lesson here is to be skeptical. Just because it appears in print doesn’t mean it’s true. Always consider the source. We also need to strive to be fairer to people. Many people of color become very upset when they feel they are being slighted because of their ethnicity. However, sometimes, they forget to stop and think how equally hurtful it is to be falsely accused of being racist. 

Celebrating diversity at a dinner Every year, we try to set a great example of what diversity is about at our Diversity Makes a Difference Scholarship dinner. This year, the rainbow revealed itself not only in the diverse group of nominees, but among all the people on stage, including presenters, master of ceremonies, and winners of the scholarships. The emcee, Enrique Cerna, is of Latino descent, and the presenters and winners were white, Black, and Asian.   

How the UW competes for future winners In the week when the University of Washington (UW) sent out its many rejection letters to freshmen, there were only a select few who were accepted. Ironically, this select group might not decide to be Huskies. My job was to convince the future Nobel Prize winners, premiere artists, new-century biotechnologists, and worldrenowned architects to choose the UW. Many of them were also accepted at other top-notch schools in the country. In this competitive world, if the UW wants to have the cream of the crop, it better do more than send out acceptance letters. Hosted by the Graduate School and Graduate Opportunities and Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP), I was invited to speak to more than 200 prospective students. I got my master of arts degree in 1979. I walked into the UW Club and saw plenty of food placed on the table, including yummy brownies. Hey, I don’t remember the UW luring me with brownies in my grad days. The orientation was much more organized than I expected. There was a special session called Survival Tips for Students of Color: Hearing it from Faculty. I don’t know whether I succeeded in luring in students. Apparently, the students who came have already been leaning toward the UW. All I did was reaffirm what they have been hearing about my alma mater. 

“Standing Above the Crowd,” is a new book by former NBA star James Donaldson. He literally stands above the

Want to get the inside scoop on the latest happenings of Seattle’s Asian American community? Follow Publisher Assunta Ng’s blog at nwasianweekly.com under the Opinion section.


29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

■ READER’S CORNER

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

11

OPINION

Studying abroad is a once-in-alifetime experience not to be forgotten As a junior at the University of Washington, I want to make the most of my college career. I believe that Ronni Lee studying abroad is one way to make a memorable college experience. This will be my last summer to go abroad before I graduate. I will be taking full advantage of this and will be studying abroad in China from June to September. Going abroad for an international education is something that I feel every student should experience at least once.

Last summer, I took an intensive second year Chinese language course in Sichuan. Once there, I studied Mandarin in its native environment, made new friends, experienced the student life, and ate spicy and tasty Sichuan food. The focus of the trip was to learn and improve my proficiency in Mandarin. Being immersed in the culture was a key factor in rapidly improving my Chinese. I stayed in the student dorms at Sichuan University, experiencing true campus life. While learning Chinese, I was partnered with a personal tutor who helped me with homework. Not only did my tutor help me with homework, but he also played the role {see LEE cont’d on page 13}

■ COMMENTARY

Photo provided by Ronni Lee

By Ronni Lee FOR NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY

Various ethnic groups in China come together to dance and perform in the Ethnic Garden in Beijing.

Preparing for emergencies will give peace of mind By Randy Huston FOR NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY

Disasters can strike at any time, and being prepared is important for whatever emergency may happen in Randy Huston the Puget Sound. By preparing now, you will gain confidence and peace of mind in knowing how to react in a disaster. Plus, you will help make your whole community stronger and safer. April is also Earthquake Preparedness Month. The recent devastating 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami, which devastated hundreds of thousands of people in Japan and impacted the United States,

serve as a sobering reminder about the unpredictability of natural disasters. Just this last weekend, a 6.7 earthquake struck Indonesia. Fortunately, there doesn’t appear to be any widespread damage. The American Red Cross urges everyone to evaluate their own personal and family disaster plans and to take steps now to be better prepared. By having a disaster supplies kit, developing a plan, and being informed about potential disasters — including earthquakes — in your neighborhood, you will be better able to keep your family safe in an emergency until help arrives. One of the most important steps is to have a disaster supplies kit at home. Your disaster kit needs to have non-perishable food, water, a first-aid kit, and other basic necessities for a minimum of three to seven days. Disaster kits need to be customized to fit the needs of

your family, so in addition to the standard items, you should include food and toys for children, pet food, prescription medications, and copies of important documents. If you already have a kit, make sure to replace emergency food and water supplies every six months unless otherwise noted on the packaging. Keep and maintain your kit in an easy-to-access location. You can also keep smaller versions of your disaster kit in your family vehicles and at work. Communication plans are also vital. Designate an out-of-area contact because local communication lines can be difficult to access during a disaster. Family members can call the contact person to report on their own status and check on others. SMS text messages from a wireless communication device will often work when a cellular signal is not strong enough to make a voice call.

Familiarize yourself with the Red Cross Safe and Well website (safeandwell.communityos.org) before a disaster strikes. Use this website after a disaster to let your family and friends know that you are safe and well; this will bring peace of mind to you and your loved ones. This website is designed to help make communication easy.  During the Japanese earthquake, we saw many people use the Internet or SMS technology as a way to contact their family immediately after the earthquake. Finally, take basic precautions to keep your dwelling safe. Pick safe places in each room of your home, workplace, and/or school. A safe place could be under a piece of furniture or against an interior wall away from windows, bookcases, or tall furniture {see HUSTON cont’d on page 13}

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asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

{BIKRAM cont’d from page 1} to the United States via Nepal was also difficult. However, the newest Sun Life Rising Star Award winner has reached personal highs in a short amount of time. Subba, 19, is from the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan, a country in Asia — population of about 700,000 — located east of Nepal and north of Bangladesh. Due to what the Bhutanese call ‘ethnic cleansing’ in the early 1990s, Subba and his family — his parents and two siblings — joined thousands of expelled Bhutanese of Nepali origin. “From Bhutan, we moved to Nepal and were refugees there,” Subba said. “There were no good facilities for us. We just had to sit on the floor on the carpet.” Today, almost 108,000 Bhutanese live in seven refugee camps in Nepal. He says some of his fellow refugees died because of the lack of food. His tent also failed to provide protection from adverse weather. “Sometimes, when the rain poured, we got the rain on us, and our clothes got wet. [Or] we just had to sit in the hot sun,” he said about daily life. Subba remembers attending school in a poorly constructed shack made of bamboo. “Sometimes, it would fall down, and we would have to run away from the school,” said Subba. Most of the parents living at the refugee camp had little formal education and could not afford to pay for their children to go to college. As a result, he says many adolescent refugees joined gangs and started taking drugs. Robbery became a common activity at the refugee camp. Subba pointed out, “There was no way to earn money. … That makes small children think about how to make money, whether to take it in a bad way.” “I lived as a Bhutanese refugee for 16 years amid daily violence and extreme poverty, but I came to America with hope,” he said. The U.S. government offered to resettle 60,000 of these refugees in 2006. With the help of the International Organization for Migration, Subba and his family immigrated to the United States two years later and shared a two-bedroom apartment in Burien. In 2009, he became involved with New Futures, an organization that partners with families in their communities. He visited The Heights at Burien, one of New Futures’ four community learning centers, and got help with his homework from tutors. After seeing other refugees have difficulty in communicating with healthcare profes-

sionals, he quickly learned to speak English. He now interprets for other refugees during their visits to the doctor. Subba eventually returned the help offered by New Futures by serving as a mentor to other students and helping them with their homework. With his first exposure to Nepali folk dancing at the refugee camp in Nepal, he decided to start his own dance group in 2009. The Burien-based group is made up of 20 students between the ages of 13 and 21 who he instructs. “We use a flute or a candle during our performances,” said Subba. For his many accomplishments, New Futures awarded him with a $1,500 scholarship. Sun Life Financial awarded him $5,000 in 2010. Last February, he received a second honor by being selected as one of 22 students attending the company’s first national summit in Miami to discuss education issues affecting disadvantaged youths. One of Subba’s friends, Krishna Wagley, shares many of the same memories of growing up in a refugee camp. Wagley, 18, is grateful for the life-saving aid he received from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. He said he used to live with no hope, shared his tent with 19 people, and experienced life at the camp as “a really horrible situation.” He immigrated to the United States two years ago with his parents, older brother, and two older sisters. They all shared a two-bedroom apartment in Burien. His third older sister stayed in Nepal. Soon after he arrived, he met Subba. While not a Nepali folk dancer, he serves in Subba’s dance group as its leader. Wagley said, “Here, in the Nepali community, we organize a lot of cultural programs like Nepali [folk] dancing. … Being in a different country, far from our motherland, still, we can show where we are from and who we are.” A student at Highline High School in Burien, who will graduate this year, Subba is studying to become a certified nursing assistant and hopes to someday work as a registered nurse. Subba also wants to pursue a career in the healthcare field. He said, “Because of all of these experiences, my goal is to become a medical administrator, helping Nepali people in the hospital. Because of my hard work, I have made a mark in my community.”  James Tabafunda can be reached at info@nwasianweekly.com.

{DIVERSITY cont’d from page 9} “Because I can’t apply for FAFSA, winning this scholarship [from the Foundation] is really important to me,” said Yepez-Carino. “It’s going to give me money for school that I wouldn’t be able to get as easily as others.” His scholarship win will help him reach his dream to study psychology at either Seattle Pacific University or Edmonds Community College. Yemesrach Demissie, a senior at Franklin High School, is a passionate dancer who has been involved with social justice clubs, such as gender club and HIV/AIDs awareness club. She shared her Ethiopian culture with students through her native Jinka cultural dance at multicultural nights at school. When accepting the award, she said she would like to become a dentist or pursue work as a humanitarian. Mia Stroutsos, a senior at Roosevelt High School, is involved with the Youth Ambassador’s program at her school. She was selected to attend a diversity youth conference in Panama as one of two youth ambassadors from North America. She was selected by her peers to be a part of the Central Leadership Council at the conference. She also participates in several local humanitarian programs and groups. When accepting her award, she said, “Cultural understanding is one of the most important tools that a student can have to be a youth ambassador.” Suman Panwar, a senior at Squalicum High

School, is the most fluent English speaker in her home. She has acted as an interpreter for her mother in various ways, such as translating at doctor appointments, attending parentteacher conferences for her younger siblings, and even securing a job for her mother. She volunteers with Squalicum’s Rotary Club, local food drives, and the United Diversity student group at her school. She also coordinates cultural awareness activities for Alderwood Elementary School and volunteers at the Sylvan Learning Center and Roosevelt Elementary School as a math tutor. Panwar credited her success to her mother who was unable to attend the gala. Through tears of happiness, she said, “I want to give back to my mom because she struggled for so long to provide for my family. It’s the least I can do.” Panwar hopes to pursue a career in the medical field. Because of her outstanding commitment to her family and diversity, Panwar was awarded the $1,200 scholarship. The four finalists were Alfonso Bustos of Mariner High School, Han Cao of Sehome High School, Seung Jae (Sarah) Hyun of Sehome High School, and Raveena Sajjan of Squalicum High School. Each finalist won a $200 scholarship, gifts, books, and a certificate of merit from the Foundation.  For more information, visit diversity. nwasianweeklyfoundation.org. Vivian Nguyen can be reached at info@nwasianweekly.com.

Architects, Consultants & Contractors KCLS Library Contract Information Available Online! Check www.kcls.org/buildings for information about KCLS construction and the latest available details on current and pending projects. • • • • •

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The King County Library System recognizes strength and value within our communities, and we encourage all interested and qualified service providers to review our public bid construction opportunities.

Contact Kelly Iverson, Facilities Assistant kiverson@kcls.org or 425.369.3308

King County Invitation to Bid Project: Residential Aircraft Noise Remedy Improvement Program - Bid Package H-22, C00623C11 Sealed Bid Time/Date: 1:30 p.m., April 26, 2011 Location Due: King County Procurement & Contract Services Section, Contracts Counter, 3rd Floor, 401 Fifth Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104 Engineer’s Estimate: $310,000 to $380,000 Scope of Work: Scope of Work: Renovation of five single family homes to reduce noise infiltration and provide mechanical ventilation. Work may include, but is not limited to: replacement of windows with vinyl-framed acoustical windows, installation of secondary aluminum-framed sliding glass storm doors, installation of swing out glass storm doors, installation of chimney-top acoustical dampers at fireplaces, attic insulation, and installation of mechanical ventilation equipment with associated miscellaneous electrical modifications. The work is located at various residences around the King County International Airport, Seattle, Washington. Contact Information: Kelly McKeever, Contract Specialist, (206) 263-9389, TTY Relay: 711, or kelly. mckeever@kingcounty.gov. A bidder may be asked to put a question in writing. No verbal answers by County, its officers, officials, employees, agents and consultants will be binding on the County. Pre-Bid Conference: Conference will be held April 18, 2010 @ 9:00 am, Room 201, Terminal Building, 7277 Perimeter Rd. S. Seattle, WA, 98108-0245. Contractors will be bussed to various houses by the County. Subcontracting Opportunities: Abatement, Mechanical, Electrical, Painting, Insulation, Cleaning.

Apprenticeship Requirements: No minimum Apprentice Utilization Requirement. SCS Utilization Requirements: 5% minimum requirement for King County Certified Small Contractors and Suppliers (SCS). Bid Bond: Not less than five percent (5%) of the Total Bid Price. The proposed Contract is under, and subject to, Executive Order 11246 of September 24, 1986, and to the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and Federal Labor Provisions. All labor on this project is subject to the highest wage rate of Davis Bacon (Federal) Wage Rates or Washington State Prevailing Wage Rates for a classification of work. The EEO requirements, labor provisions and wage rates are included in the specifications and bid documents and are available for inspection on line at the Builders Exchange of Washington web site and the King County Contracts Counter. To be eligible for award, each bidder shall comply with the affirmative action requirements which are contained in Division 0 of the Contract Documents and the FAA Special Provisions. King County has a Race/Gender Neutral overall annual DBE goal for FAA assisted projects. King County is unable to advertise the goal. However, every effort should be made to attain DBE participation. A Contractor or subcontractor, who may be awarded a contract of $10,000 or more, will be required to maintain an affirmative action program, the standards for which are contained in the Division 0 of the Contract Documents and the FAA Special

Provisions. At the time of solicitation King County has obtained Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grant funding for 95% of the activities as described in the bid documents and is subject to the requirements set forth in FAA Project No. 3-53-0058-042 and is incorporated by reference as if fully set forth herein. Plans/Specs: Electronic copies of the plans, specifications, reference documents, and any addenda for this solicitation can be accessed through an external link from our website shown below. This site includes options and instructions for printing. Printed documents may also be ordered by contacting Reprographics Northwest at 206-624-2040. Copies of documents are not available for purchase from King County, but are available for review M – F 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Contracts Counter: Chinook Bldg, 3rd Floor 401 Fifth Avenue Seattle, WA 98104. To receive email notifications of addenda or other important information concerning this solicitation, you must register to be a planholder under the “Solicitations” tab at the following internet link: Website: http://www.kingcounty.gov/procurement. This information is available in alternate formats for individuals with disabilities upon advance request by calling 206-263-9400, TTY Relay: 711. Notes: Bids received after Sealed Bid Time will not be considered. Bidders accept all risks of late delivery, regardless of fault. King County is not responsible for any costs incurred in response to this Invitation to Bid.


29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

■ ASTROLOGY

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

13

For the week of April 9 — April 15, 2011 RAT Setting the record straight now will save you from having to deal with a messy situation down the line.

DRAGON Each person has something they are good at or enjoy doing. You are one of the lucky ones who will find both.

MONKEY Unfinished business could be the source of future conflict. Avoid sticky issues by wrapping things up cleanly and definitively.

OX You are a firm believer that actions speak louder than words. That is part of the reason why you consistently choose to lead by example.

SNAKE A recent event causes you to view your world a little differently. Shaking things up isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

ROOSTER Know someone who could use a little mentoring? It doesn’t take much to make a difference.

TIGER Do you find yourself constantly looking for the next challenge? Remember that living in the moment is a worthy goal as well.

HORSE Spending extra time with a loved one this week? Considering the alternative, it will be time well spent.

RABBIT Meeting resistance where you did not expect to find any? Before proceeding further, attempt to reach some sort of consensus.

GOAT A healthy respect for danger can keep you out of trouble, provided that you actually heed the warning.

DOG Keeping the peace does not mean sacrificing your own happiness. True harmony entails a more equal compromise. PIG Sometimes, you are in the mood for debate, but not this week. Seek out a friend or two who are on the same page.

What’s your animal sign? Rat 1912, 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008 Ox 1913, 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009 Tiger 1914, 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010 Rabbit 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011 Dragon 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000 Snake 1917, 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001 Horse 1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002 Goat 1919, 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003 Monkey 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004 Rooster 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005 Dog 1922, 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006 Pig 1923, 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007

*The year ends on the first new moon of the following year. For those born in January and February, please take care when determining your sign.

{LEE cont’d from page 11} of my language partner by correcting and helping me practice my Mandarin. Experiencing and living the student life in China is vastly different from life in America. The university campus is about eight times bigger than UW’s campus, making walks to the classrooms seem like a long journey. The university offers a mass variety of fields for students to study in, and the list of activities to do is endless. The numerous outdoor basketball courts, soccer fields, badminton courts, and ping-pong tables on campus are always being utilized by students. Life in Sichuan was definitely relaxing. Studies and fun activities were continuously being intermixed. After finishing my Chinese studies in Sichuan, I traveled to Beijing to embark on another study-abroad trip. In Beijing, I continued my Chinese studies at the third-year level and took Chinese cultural lectures at Tsinghua University. Additionally, I went to the common sightseeing locations in Beijing, which included the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Bird’s Nest, Water Cube, Temple of Heaven, and many more. During this last trip, I focused more on the Chinese culture and though I was continuing my Chinese studies, life in Beijing was different from life in Sichuan. The university campus is even bigger than Sichuan University’s, forcing me to allot at least 40 minutes or more in walking time before reaching my classroom building. My “journey” walks at Sichuan University turned to “road trip” walks at Tsinghua University. With a bigger campus, the number of students increased and it felt as if the

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campus was its own city. With all the walking in Sichuan and Beijing, it is apparent why riding bikes is so popular in China. This summer, I plan to study abroad in Shanghai and Nanjing, participating in two different study-abroad trips as I did last summer. In Shanghai, I will improve on my current Chinese, studying at the fourth-year level. However, the emphasis of the trip is the provided internship. While taking Chinese classes in the morning, I will also have an internship in the afternoon. I know my experiences in China are similar in many ways, but they are different each time I go back. It is because of this that I always go back to China to finish my adventure. As an unemployed student, I applied for numerous scholarships to fund my trips. There are many scholarship organizations that encourage students to study abroad and offer considerable amounts of money to help students make their international education possible. Such scholarships include the Gilman International Scholarship, Diversity Abroad Scholarship, AmeriSpan Scholarship, and many more. AmeriSpan offers scholarships, as well as study-abroad trips to college students and students as young as 13 years. They offer numerous scholarship opportunities to help students pay their program fees. 

{HUSTON cont’d from page 11} that could fall on you. Practice drop, cover, and hold on in each safe place. If you do not have sturdy furniture to hold on to, sit on the floor next to an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms. Strap down tall objects such as file cabinets and bookcases and keep a flashlight and sturdy shoes by each person’s bed. In the days ahead, the Red Cross will continue to work with state and federal response partners to further refine and assess our response plans locally and also continue to work with the Japanese Red Cross for their recovery. You can make a difference within your own family and community to plan for future disasters and help mitigate any potential damage that could occur.  Randy Huston is CEO of the American Red Cross serving King & Kitsap Counties

Check out AmeriSpan for more information at www.amerispan.com or at 1-800-879-6640.

To learn about what do during or after an earthquake, please go to www.seattleredcross.org or www.redcrosswashington.org. For more information or to set up a disaster preparedness presentation for a community group, contact us at 206-709-4528 in King County or 360-377-3761 in Kitsap County.

Ronnie Lee can be reached at info@nwasianweekly. com.

Huston can be reached at info@nwasianweekly. com.


asianweekly northwest

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APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

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29 YEARS YOUR VOICE

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

15

ragtag band of kids. There’s this drug called the soy sauce that has hit the streets and is wreaking havoc on this town. [My character] is one of the unlucky, hapless kids that gets caught up in it.” The film is currently in post-production and is projected to be released in 2012.

Help Japan

“Secret Asian Man” comic books are now available at the Kinokuniya bookstore in Seattle.

Photo by Jimmy Ryan

{WONG cont’d from page 1} out at Alexandra for what she did. And frankly, they were kind of boring. … I saw them and thought, ‘This isn’t productive at all … both sides are attacking each other without second thoughts or considering the consequences of what they’re doing.’ ” Wong decided to go a different route. His video response showcased Jimmy Wong a catchy song that he wrote, which was apparently meant to woo Wallace. The chorus of his song starts with, “I pick up my phone and sing, Ching chong, it means I love you. Ling long, I really want you. Ting tong, I don’t actually know what that means …” “I think comedy is the best way of addressing this,” said Wong. “[Before writing the song], I watched her video again. I looked at it and found what stuck out to me the most — which was the fact that this wasn’t a girl that was out to attack anyone or harm anyone. She just wanted to voice her opinion on something that annoyed her. … She was annoyed by people talking on the phone in the library. She doesn’t understand why people talk on the phone, maybe she doesn’t understand what they say. The comedy came from that.” Wong’s video response has had nearly 3 million views on YouTube. “The responses have run the gamut,” said Wong. “It’s the Internet. You tend to get comments from every end of the spectrum, from thoroughly positive to thoroughly negative. Though, [most people] have had a positive response. I think the message, being positive, draws out a positive response. The original video (Wallace’s) was filled with so much negativity [and got negative responses in return].”

Music and upbringing

Though currently living in Los Angeles, Wong grew up south of Seattle in Normandy Park, a small city that is bordered by Burien and Des Moines. He is a second-generation Asian American. He said his mother is from Beijing and is half Mongolian and half Chinese. His father is Chinese, from southern Canton.

On April 14th, Wong will play two or three of his original songs at the Triple Door Musicquarium Lounge at Help Japan, a benefit event for Japan Red Cross. “It’s gonna be this awesome event at the Triple Door,” said Wong. “This event was perfect for me, and it’s in Seattle.” “I’m gonna give a small talk at the show about my original video [response to Wallace],” added Wong. “I’m going to play a couple of songs that I’ve written over the years. … Thematically, some of them have a bit to do with what has happened in Japan. Hopefully, they’re inspiring songs.” Wong is currently donating all proceeds from iTunes sales of his songs to the relief effort. Christine Chen, founder of Chen Communications, will be the emcee for the event. The suggested donation at the door is $15.

Being a role model

Jimmy Wong in his YouTube video “I grew up playing classical piano for about eight years,” said Wong. “My parents had my brother (Freddie) and me taking lessons at a young age. We stopped when we entered high school. However, that musical sensibility stayed with us. I started playing guitar a few years ago. All that stuff came naturally to me because I had a strong base from when I was a child.” Surprisingly, Wong moved to Los Angeles, not because he wanted to become a musician, but because he wanted to become an actor. He had attended Middlebury College in Vermont and majored in theater and drama. “I actually hadn’t considered music seriously [when I first moved to LA], because I didn’t think — I wasn’t a singer/ songwriter at that point,” said Wong. “All I knew of music was from playing classical music. I studied acting in college, and that’s why I moved to LA.”

Acting

Wong may soon be a silver screen staple. He was cast in Don Coscarelli’s upcoming, “John Dies at the End,” a film based on the comedic horror novel by David Wong. The movie stars Paul Giamatti and Clancy Brown. Jimmy Wong plays Fred Chu. “It’s very much a funny movie,” said Wong. “The part I play is of a kind of out-of-place Chinese student in the Midwest. He’s a friend of the lead character, and they form this

Though Asian Americans have made some headway in the mainstream performing arts, overall representation is still lacking. This is something that Wong recognizes. “The funny thing is that I didn’t think about [the responsibility of representing Asians] when I came down and started acting,” said Wong. “I was very much focused on going in there and doing the best work I can, what’s expected of me as a professional actor. More recently, especially after the song [about Wallace became so popular], it has become more obvious that Asians are severely misrepresented in the artistic community, at least in America. … Very rarely do we find traction and success in the U.S. It seems there aren’t roles in movies, and it hasn’t happened yet. I feel that all it takes is one or two very prominent people to step out and show the audience that this is possible. There’s no reason why we couldn’t have Asian leading men in movies. “After doing [the response video], it feels almost like I’ve become a figure who [can be] inspiring to Asian Americans,” Wong added. “I feel a weird pressure to, at least, be much more responsible in what I do, both musically and acting-wise. … I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity [to represent Asian Americans] because it helps put my own career in perspective and … [I] know that what I’m doing is significant.”  For more information about Jimmy Wong, visit jfwong.com. Help Japan will take place on April 14 at the Triple Door Musiquarium Lounge from 6 to 8:30 p.m. For more information about the event, contact Nellie Fujii Anderson at nellie@fujii.com. Stacy Nguyen can be reached at info@nwasian weekly.com.

Want to become a fan on Facebook or follow us on Twitter? Visit www.nwasianweekly.com.


asianweekly northwest

16

APRIL 9 – APRIL 15, 2011

Sau-Chi Betty Yan, Ph.D. Research Fellow, Oncology Patient Tailoring, Eli Lilly and Company

Started as a senior biochemist at Lilly in 1985 Attended high school in Hong Kong Completed graduate studies at Iowa State University and postdoctorate studies at University of Minnesota and University of Texas

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Never give up. We all have unique qualities that make us good at our jobs. In my case I tend to be pretty stubborn, or persistent you could say. I always believe there’s another way to approach a problem. And that patience and persistence are what keep me going. My first assignment at Lilly resulted in the development of a medicine for patients suffering with a life-threatening condition. I was involved from the very beginning, from experimentation all the way through clinical trials and approval. The process

took nearly 20 years, but in the end we developed one of the most complex proteins any company has made, which has helped save many, many lives. Now I’ve moved into oncology discovery, designing and developing new medicines to treat cancer and tailoring therapies to individual patients. It’s challenging work, but we are determined to find another breakthrough treatment. I just love the process of discovery — I never give up. lilly.com


VOL 30 NO 15 | 2011