The Ghost of Carlos Bulosan

A placard featuring an artist's portrait of Carlos Bulosan along with a quote.

By Guest Contributor: Billy Yates

Editor’s Note: Carlos Bulosan’s birthday was November 24.

The ghost of Carlos Bulosan lives in the Los Angeles Public Library. I have no way to prove it, but I trust in coincidence. 

In 2018, the New Americans Initiative center opened, offering citizenship and ESL classes along with multilingual resources for immigrants from the over 140 countries that call LA home. It was launched on the first floor’s International Languages Department, where many enter with hopes of constructing their own America Dream; it is one of the floors that radical Filipino writer, organizer, and dreamer Carlos Bulosan frequented in the 1930’s and 1940’s.  Here, Bulosan explored the world’s stories through books, absorbing authors that would influence his own reflections of the immigrant experience at the peak of the Great Depression. Rereading a worn copy of Bulosan’s America is in the Heart, sitting next to a stack of N-400 citizenship applications and multilingual Know Your Rights! Pamphlets, I am torn by the prophetic poignancy of it all. In a time when official policy is to “Make America Great Again,” Bulosan begs the question: What is America, and who is it great for?

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#GivingTuesday 2020: Reappropriate’s Top 5, and a listing of AAPI non-profits

Every year, I publish a working list of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) non-profit groups for your consideration for #GivingTuesday. This year is no exception; below the fold, you’ll find a long list of AAPI organizations that could use some support. (Here’s last year’s list.)

This year, I will be donating to the following groups, all of whom do work that I really admire:

I invite you to contribute a few of your Giving Tuesday dollars to these groups or to your favourite group in the list below.

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The US Immigration System is Failing a Crucial Voice: International Adoptees

An infographic by Adoptees for Justice on the Adoptee Citizenship Act. (Photo credit: Adoptees for Justice)

By Guest Contributor: Olivia Zalecki

It is 2 am and, like the reasonable young person I am, I’ve traded sleep for the almost too close for comfort act of scrolling aimlessly through my Instagram page. Dispersed between the typical photos of food and friends, I came across a post by an adoption organization. The post featured an image of a young Chinese child. My thumb hovered over the image. In the photo the sweet child was captured giggling in the arms of a white volunteer. The caption underneath read, “Help them find their loving forever family.”

I have seen images like this before. The messaging was hardly anything new. As a Chinese adoptee, I am well aware of the pervasiveness of such messaging.

November is National Adoption Awareness Month (NAAM). This time of year my feed becomes saturated with adoption-related posts like the one mentioned. There is a crucial distinction to be made between adoption-related and adoptee-created posts. The former, in my experience, usually involves organizations promoting adoption as a “public good” and many adoptive parents virtue-signaling how adopting their child from [insert any foreign nation here] saved them.

However, the non-adopted community often doesn’t realize that these posts don’t tell the whole story. Adoption does not always come with a “forever family” or a happily ever after.

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Kollaboration to Celebrate 20 Years with Virtual Celebration

Advertising image for Kollaboration 2020 (Photo credit: Kollaboration)

Founded in 2000 by comedian Paul “PK” Kim, Kollaboration has become a pillar of the Asian American arts community for its tireless support of Asian American artists, musicians, and young people. Each year, Kollaboration hosts several events that showcase Asian American talent, as well as training sessions and workshops to help aspiring artists launch new media projects. Since 2015, Kollaboration has also hosted Empower, a leadership conference that invites leaders in Asian American entertainment and community organizing to share their perspectives to aspiring Asian American artists. (I was honoured to be invited to speak at Empower in 2017.)

This year, Kollaboration celebrates its 20th anniversary on December 12th with a free virtual event featuring a powerhouse lineup of Asian American media voices. Scheduled guests include rapper Ruby Ibarra, singer-songwriter Megan Lee, and YouTuber David Choi among others.

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AAPI Run: Tania Ganguly, Candidate for Canton Township Trustee, MI

Tania Ganguly (Photo Credit: Tania for Canton Trustee)

Once again, a record number of Asian Americans and a growing number of Pacific Islanders are running for public office at the local, state, and national level.

Every week, Reappropriate will profile progressive AAPI candidates for higher office, as well as officials serving in public office. Check back at Reappropriate throughout 2020 to learn more about these candidates and find out how you can get more involved in their campaigns.

What is your full name?
Tania Ganguly

What office are you seeking and/or what office do you currently hold?
Canton Township Trustee in Michigan

When is the election date and/or when is the end of your term?
November 3, 2020.

What is your party registration (if any)?

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