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Stay tuned for: Senior Profiles, graduation notes, end-of-the-year reflections, and more!

A week ago, our friend, ally, and graduating senior Christina Chen forwarded a message from Larry Tantay and Dennis Chin (the man whom I love to give shoutouts), who are participating in the Amazingly Queer Race for Economic Justice, which is a fundraising benefit "for a great cause: fighting poverty and homelessness in the LGBT community. Nurture your inner child, challenge your friends and co-workers, and have fun while supporting the community and drawing some good karma".

Larry and Dennis have been posting vlogs to update friends, family, and lovers on the progress of their fundraising (hint: see 3:55):

The race is on Saturday, May 30th, so be sure to show up and show your support!

Holla for that dolla! Larry and Dennis need $$$ to race!!

A fundraising page by Larry Tantay
Hello family, chosen family, colleagues, lovers, and soon-to-be-lovers,

Our team (the FOBs - Fabulous, Outrageous Bitches) has just registered for the Amazingly Queer Race for Economic Justice.

The race is a competitive scavenger hunt here in NYC for prizes and sweet sweet glory, but most importantly a great cause: challenging and changing the structures and institutions that create poverty and economic injustice in queer communities.

We want to raise $700 for this race and we really need your help to get us there before the deadline, which is in a few days.

Can you give $20 to support this great cause? If you do, we'll give you love in our vlog. Check out our first vlog here:


$20 would be great, but anything you can give means so much. You can make your secure donation below.

When we take the prize (which you know we will - I mean, two sexy Asian men with even sexier politics. How could we lose?) we'll be sure to include you in our victory speech.

One time for the Gaysians!


We love you all,


Star Trek

Are you wondering why we haven't talked about J.J. Abrams' Star Trek, despite our obvious excitement about it? That's because we haven't seen it (see: finals). Boo hoo. So don't talk about it until after Wednesday, when we've seen it in IMAX!


Good luck, everybody!

The case of Vincent Chin, where two white men publicly brutally beat a Chinese American man to death in 1982 and only received 3 years probation each, is an open sore in Asian American history. While Asian American activists took the case to court, filing the first federal case of a hate crime against an Asian American, the killers were still acquitted of all charges (including committing a hate crime) by an all white jury in Cincinnati.

Most recently, two young white men beat to death Luis Ramirez, a Mexican immigrant, while taunting him with racial slurs. The killers were also acquitted by an all white jury of all charges including third-degree murder and ethnic intimidation. Although the Vincent Chin case has passed but is continually remembered by the Asian American community, Luis Ramirez's case is still active. This is where crossracial coalition and alliance work is crucial.

So far, this is the only petition/action I've found, but let's all please keep our eyes peeled for more actions to come. Petition


No Justice for Vincent Then, No Justice for Luis Now

Editor’s Note: Last week, two of the young white men who allegedly killed Mexican immigrant Luis Ramirez in Shenandoah, Penn. were acquitted by an all white jury. The case mirrors the first federal hate crime prosecution involving an Asian American. Carmina Ocampo is a Skadden fellow and staff attorney at the Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC) of Los Angeles. Immigration Matters regularly features the views of immigration advocates and experts.

Last July, Luis Ramirez, a Latino immigrant who worked in a factory, was brutally killed by a gang of drunken white teenagers motivated by their dislike of the growing Latino population in their small coalmining town of Shenandoah, Penn. Two of the young white men who killed Luis were recently acquitted by an all white jury of all serious charges including third-degree murder and ethnic intimidation.

The facts of this case sounded all too familiar to those of us lawyers who work on civil rights cases. They mirror the facts at the heart of the 1982 Vincent Chin hate crime case.

Luis Ramirez was taunted with racial slurs and beaten to death during an altercation with a group of drunken white teenagers....Luis’s murder occurred during a time of increasing anti-immigrant sentiment directed primarily towards Latino immigrants, exacerbated by the economic crisis. Vincent Chin’s murder took place during a climate of intense anti-Asian sentiment directed at the Japanese who were blamed for taking jobs away from American workers. Helen Zia, a well-known Asian American civil rights activist described the early 1980s as a dangerous time to look Asian. The same may be said for Latinos today.

In both Luis’s and Vincent’s cases, the killers argued that their actions should be excused because they were drunk, the victims were the aggressors, and they were merely exercising self-defense during a drunken brawl.

continue reading...

Again, we end the year by asking our exalted seniors (there are some in every year!) some questions about their time, Asian Americana, and memories of organizing at Columbia. Since sending them out, our eager fellow Blaaager Ryan Fukumori was the first to respond! May we take wisdom from his words. Also, if you're a senior who got this - DO YOUR PROFILE I COMMAND YOU. That's all.

Name, School
Ryan Heiroku Fukumori, CC

Northwest Aztlán, a.k.a. Berkeley, CA

Greatest achievement
Clocking in nearly 100 hours in the first Party Room without smelling like I was decomposing (or so I hope). Or 50 Yen.

Most hilarious anecdote from student organizing
At the 2008 New York City Asian American Student Conference, I attempted to stave off the effects of sleep deprivation by drinking a few of those 6-hour energy shots . They did the job, but they also made me really weak in the knees, which Nhu-Y claimed was polio. She was also throwing things at me all day. And I'm not sure this is hilarious to anyone beyond ourselves...

Favorite yearly/semesterly tradition
Pacing nervously and drinking six cups of water right before cultureSHOCK performances

Fondest memory of AAA/PC
April 21, 2007, eating gravy & cheese fries with Geologic of Blue Scholars in EC1412, after they performed their first show (ever!) in NYC. Blue Scholars played drinking games (with Street Fighter, of course) and bought us food from Hamilton Deli, and their manager passed out on an air mattress at 5am while Geo smoked cigarettes out the window and waxed poetics & politics with us. For a bunch of the '09ers it was the end of our tenures on the AAA board--elections were that following afternoon--so it was a great parting gift.

Favorite neighborhood haunt
The Intercultural Resource Center--I never lived there, but I've spent innumerable hours there in meetings and made connections to a lot of amazing people doing great progressive work in their organizations, peer circles, and communities. Also, Saji's has the best Japanese food in the area, hands down (I may not speak the mother tongue, but I do know the cuisine)

Your weakness or poison, five words or less
Poison: I plead the fifth, Weakness: Funyuns

The name of your future dissertation
Get back to me in five years, when I'm actually writing one (aaaahhh!)

What you'll miss most and least about Barnard/Columbia, post-grad
Will: Having the time, space and energy to explore new things, starting my day at 2pm, and the people with whom I've been fortunate enough to spend my time here.
Won't: the folks (and there are a lot of them) who filter everything through middle-class politics and don't consider their own class privilege in what they say, think, or do. And the, uh, aftereffects of eating at John Jay, to put it politely.

Where we can find you in ten years
Struggling to win tenure at some nondescript institution of higher learning in California. And, raising kids? What a scary thought.

Where we can find you in thirty years
Coming to the inevitable and horrendous conclusion that I've become technologically illiterate, as my kids look on embarrassingly.

Dream occupation(s) other than the one you're pursuing?
If I had Jeff Chang's job, but I also got to drive an ice cream truck.

Three words of advice for incoming AAA/PC'ers in the 2013 class
1. Asian Americans are people of color! Building bridges with Latino/a, African American, and Native American students, and critically engaging the issues common to multiple communities of color, were huge sources of inspiration and empowerment for me and definitely helped break down the (mis)conception that Asian Americans have to be an isolated student population on campus. And hell hath no fury like a multiracial alliance fighting for institutional change.

2. I came here with a lot of problematic attitudes about gender and sexuality. It hurts to admit that, but I owe everything to my sistas who (whether they know it or not) helped me break down my own sexism and promote gender equality in my everyday actions, not just my words. So, to my fellow APA men: really take the time to learn from the women around you, and don't be afraid to be wrong. And--the notion that Asian men are effeminate really does suck, but if we start upholding sexist and homophobic ideas to combat that stereotype, we're part of the problem and not the solution.

3. This isn't original, but: HAVE FUN! It's not worth the time if it's all chores and obligations. Make friends, and make the most of the opportunity and learn new things.


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