Published days before 2014’s Asian American Heritage Month opens, Neal Rubin (@nealrubin_dn) of the The Detroit News (one of the city’s conservative papers) has written one of the most bizarre, incoherent and irresponsible stories to-date on the Vincent Chin murder. (Note: Rubin and/or his editors have since made numerous changes to the story; thanks to reader @DorisTruong for pulling a cached version that appeared prior to the edits, .pdf)
Vincent Chin’s brutal death at the hands of Detroit auto workers Ronald Ebens and Michael Nitz 32 years ago remains a watershed moment in Asian American history. Faced with the unmistakable evidence that Chin’s killing was a racially motivated hate crime, Asian Americans across the nation united across ethnic boundaries to seek justice for Chin’s murder.Despite these efforts, both killers were sentenced to no jail time and a minimal fine for their parts in Chin’s death.
Under the headline “What we all assume we know about the Vincent Chin case probably isn’t so“, Rubin rejected the documented facts. Instead, he penned today an alternate history: a weird screed so sensationalized, incoherent, and libelous that it seems more appropriate for the pages of a tabloid magazine than a newspaper of any repute. In so doing, Rubin reopens for Asian Americans the painful memory of a traumatizing miscarriage of justice, and pours salt into the wound with unfounded hearsay.
To say that the Asian American community is outraged would be an understatement.