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AALM's mission statement: “To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world in a cultural and sensitive language relevant to the Asian American social context.” 


This month's "Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism" webinar is entitled "The Dangers of the Model Minority Myth".
 
The killings of eight people in Metro Atlanta on March 16th shocked the world.  The police have claimed that the attacks were not racially motivated.  

Yet we all know that racial violence has been a consistent and painful part of the history of Asian Americans in the U.S.   The first wave of Chinese immigrants arrived as cheap laborers in the U.S. in the 1850s to build the railroads.  Fear of the Chinese was the cause of the 1871 Chinese massacre that took place in Los Angeles.  Shortly thereafter the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 was enacted, the first time the U.S. government prohibited a specific ethnic group from entering the country.

Fast forward to 1942, President Roosevelt authorized the illegal incarceration 120,000 people Japanese ancestry and forced them into American concentration camps.  In 1982 Vincent Chin, was brutally beaten by four out of work resentful white men who mistook him for being Japanese, explaining later that they blamed the Japanese for their layoffs.

Recently the “model minority” myth has hidden the dangerous fact that Asian Americans continue to be the target of racist hatred and violence. The model minority myth suggests that Asian Americans are more successful than other ethnic minorities because of their diligence and hard work, because they emphasize education, and Asian Americans are all law-abiding people by nature. The model minority myth gives the society the idea that all Asian Americans are upwardly mobile and thus it creates a false and dangerous perception that Asian Americans cannot and do not experience racial discrimination and racist hatred.  In reality, the Asian American community is this country's most economically divided: a 2018 study by the Pew Research Center found that Asian Americans experience the largest income-inequality gap as an ethnic and racial group in the U.S. And in reality, Asian Americans continue to 
face racial violence as much as any other ethnic minority.  And once can argue that during this pandemic they've been one of the main targets of hate.  Yes, this violence has been an undeniable part of the history of Asian Americans in the U.S and the people who were senselessly murdered in Atlanta are a sad reminder that the violence continues unabated. 

Please keep in your prayers the families of those who were killed in Atlanta: Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Delaina Ashley Yaun Gonzalez, Paul Andre Michels, Soon Chung Park, Hyun Grant, Suncha Kim, and Yong Ae Yue.

In Service,


Rev. John Oda
Asian American Language Ministry Plan
Webinar #5
The Dangers of the Model Minority Myth

March 23rd at 5:00pm PST /8:00pm EST
 
The Asian American Language Ministry Plan, the General Board of Church and Society (GBCS) and the New Federation of Asian American United Methodists (NFAAUM), have launched a series of webinars entitled “Raise Your Voice Against Racism”.  In this webinar a panel of experts will discuss the dangers of the Model Minority Myth.  

The model minority myth, as Dr. Sarah Soonling-Blackburn explains, "perpetuates a narrative in which Asian American children are whiz kids or musical geniuses. This myth characterizes Asian Americans as a polite, law-abiding group who have achieved a higher level of success than the general population through some combination of innate talent and pull-yourselves-up-by-your-bootstraps immigrant striving."

Please join us for this webinar as we explore and talk about the "Dangers of the Model Minority Myth".

 
Panelists:


Dr. Sarah-Soonling Blackburn 
is a Professional Development Manager for Learning for Justice. Learning for Justice was started by the Southern Poverty Law Center.  The goal of Learning for Justice is to be a catalyst for racial justice in the South and beyond, working in partnership with communities to dismantle white supremacy, strengthen intersectional movements and advance the human rights of all people.  She is the author of the important article called "What is the Model Minority Myth?"




Vidhi Bamzai is a civil rights attorney based in Jackson, Mississippi, working on systemic immigration issues across the Deep South. Vidhi is deeply committed to racial justice advocacy and believes in community-driven approaches to radical change. A native (and proud!) Michigander, Vidhi’s perspective has been shaped by a relatively privileged childhood and college education in the suburbs of Detroit, followed by a teaching stint in mostly Black Detroit, law school in the deeply segregated city of Boston, and now as an attorney in Jackson. Vidhi is a proud Indian American who has grappled with her identity and her role in racial justice advocacy for most of her life and is very excited to share her thoughts and experience with this group. 

This fifth installment in the series will be held on March 23rd at 5:00pm PST /8:00pm EST.  
 

The Zoom Link is here:   

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81139549216 

 
For more questions, please contact:
Rev. John Oda

JOda@umcmission.org


Download Statement Here

       

A Statement from AALM and NFAAUM

Asians and Asian-Americans of the United Methodist Church Condemn the Rise of Anti-Asian Violence in the U.S.

Published on March 15, 2021

John 1:5, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”

Amos 5:24, “But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!”


Lent is a season of self-examination, confession and a walk with Jesus through the wilderness, alienation, betrayal, death and ultimately resurrection. As we journey with Jesus through Lent, we see that we are currently in a period of darkness because there has been a precipitous rise in the hatred and violence against the Asian American community in this country.

The Asian and Asian American Bishops of the United Methodist Church, the New Federation of Asian American United Methodists, the Asian American Language Ministry Plan, along with other Asian American leaders and academics of the United Methodist Church, strongly condemn the surge in xenophobic violence against Asian Americans and especially violence against the Asian American elderly.  More than 122 incidents of anti-Asian American hate crimes have been committed in 16 of the country’s most populous cities since 2020, an increase of almost 150% over the previous year.  According to Stop AAPI Hate, 2,800 incidents of racism and discrimination targeting Asian Americans have occurred since March 2020.  Russell Jeung, the chair of the Asian-American Studies Department at San Francisco State University and one of the leaders of “Stop AAPI Hate”, said that, according to the organization’s data, people 60 and older were disproportionately targeted with physical violence, as were women.  In New York City, violence against Asian Americans has risen by 1,900% in 2020.

These acts of hate are neither sporadic nor haphazard. They reflect a larger systemic trend of anti-Asian American animosity brought on during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has been exacerbated by documented xenophobic policies and racist rhetoric disseminated by the previous Administration.  Politically charged racist rhetoric has fomented the hate against Asian Americans.  The people who have perpetrated these acts of violence have used racist language including phrases like: Wuhan Virus, Kung Flu, China Virus, China Plague. This dangerous scapegoating is fabricated and must stop.

We strongly condemn the rising physical violence against Asian Americans across this country.  In California, attacks against Asian Americans rose by 115%.  In the San Francisco Bay Area, racist and hate motivated violence  has left one person dead and others badly injured.    On January 5th, a 52-year-old Asian American woman was shot in the head with a flare gun in Oakland’s Chinatown.  On February 3rd, a 64-year-old grandmother in San Jose, California was assaulted and robbed of cash that she had just withdrawn for Lunar New Year gifts.  On that same day in Manhattan, Noel Quintana, 61, was riding the subway when his assaulter slashed his face.  On February 4th a 91 year old man in Oakland, California was inexplicably shoved to the ground by a man who was walking behind him.   On February 26th a 36 year old an Asian-American man was stabbed while walking outside the federal courthouse in Chinatown, New York City.  On March 14th a Burmese man and his two children were slashed by a knife-wielding attacker while shopping in Midland, Texas.  The accused man said he did it because he thought they were “Chinese and infecting people with the coronavirus”.  On January 26th, 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee was going for a morning walk in his San Francisco neighborhood, when a man running at him full speed smashed into his frail body, throwing him to the pavement.  Mr. Ratanapakdee died of his injuries two days later.  There have been more than two dozen recent assaults and robberies on the Asian American elderly in the San Francisco Bay Area and many many more have gone unreported.  These attacks must stop. 

We commend President Biden who, on January 26, 2021, signed a memorandum pledging to combat anti-Asian and Pacific Islander discrimination and the Presidential memorandum states, “During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, inflammatory and xenophobic rhetoric has put Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) persons, families, communities, and businesses at risk.”  While we wholeheartedly affirm this memorandum as a step forward it must now be followed up by immediate action both by the State and the Church. 

Actions: 

We ask that the church live up to its commitments stated in the 2016 United Methodist Book of Resolution #3422 “Speaking Out for Compassion: Transforming the Context of Hate in the United States”.  This is an urgent matter of justice.   

We ask that all United Methodists read again and live out our own Charter for Racial Justice which states that all persons are of equal value in the sight of God and that racism is a rejection of the teachings of Jesus Christ.  The Charter also states that our struggle for justice must be based on new attitudes, new understandings, and new relationships and must be reflected in the laws, policies, structures, and practices of both church and state.

We implore all United Methodists to end their complicity with hate and speak out when jokes, disparagements, and stereotypes based on difference. These differences fuel fear and rationalize acts of violence. We further call on all United Methodists to implement, biblically based, multigenerational resources that address the systemic nature of hate crimes.    

 Finally, we call on the Council of Bishops to create opportunities to listen to and hear from Asian Americans and other excluded groups about the current reality and impact of the violence and hatred; and partner with these groups to act for justice so that the light of Jesus can shine in the darkness, and the darkness of systematic racism will be conquered.

As we continue our journey through this Lenten Season and move from darkness to light, we are reminded that these acts of violence against Asian Americans have their origins in the darkness. Shifting this hatred into the light of God will require that all us condemn acts of racist hatred and move toward love, tolerance and justice; all of which Jesus Christ modeled in his life, death and resurrection.
 

We the undersigned support and endorse this statement:

Name:                          Title:

Asian and Asian American Bishops:
Bishop Sudarshana Devadhar, New England Annual Conference

Bishop Grant Hagiya, California Pacific Annual Conference

Bishop Robert Hoshibata, Desert Southwest Annual Conference

Bishop Rodolfo A. Juan, Davao Episcopal Area

Bishop Hee-Soo Jung, Wisconsin Annual Conference

Bishop Jeremiah Park, Susquehanna Annual Conference

Bishop Roy Sano, Retired

 

Asian Americans in Church Leadership:
Rev. Bener Baysa Agtarap, Executive Director, Community Engagement & Church Planting/Path 1, GBOD

Rev. Dr. Liberato Bautista, Asst. General Sec. - UN and International Affairs, GBCS

Rev. Felicisimo Cao, DMin, Dir Camping and Retreat Ministries and Young People's Ministries, Cal- Nev. Conference.

Rev. Dr. Judy Chung, Executive Director, Missionary Service, GBGM

Rev. Doris Kung Chi-Pui Dalton, Dir., Leadership Dev./Intercultural Competency, NY Conference 

Rev. Neal Christie, Social Justice Consultant with AALM and NFAAUM

Roland Fernandes, General Secretary, General Board of Global Ministries

Rhondalei Gabuat, Exec. Assist - Episcopal Office, PNW Conference

Rev. Mark Galang, District Super. Puget Sound Dist., PNW Conference

Aimee H. Hong, Sr. Executive Director of Education and Engagement, GBCS

Kwangki David Kim, Dir., Korean, Asian & Pacific Islander Ministries. GBOD 

Sung-ok Lee, Assist. Gen. Sec., Christian Social Action, UM Women

Rev. Derek Nakano, District Super. SeaTac District, PNW Conference

Rev. Bich Thy “Betty” Nguyen, Multicultural and Advocacy Ministries Devel, Mountain Sky Conference

Rev. Mighty Rasing, Director, Central Conference Relations, GBOD

Rev. David Valera, Exec. Director, Connectional Ministries, PNW Conference

 

Asian Americans in Academia:
Dr. Jung Choi, Sr. Dir. Wesleyan Form. Initiatives, Duke Divinity School

Dr. Courtney Goto, Assoc. Prof. of Religious Ed., Boston School of Theology

Dr. Dong Hyeon Jeong, Asst. Professor, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Dr. Arun W. Jones, Associate Professor, Candler School of Theology

Dr. Helen Jin Kim,  Asst. Professor, Candler School of Theology

Rev. Dr. Sangwoo Kim, Sr Dir. Methodist House of Studies, Duke Divinity School

Rev. Dr. Kah-Jin Jeffrey Kuan, President, Claremont School of Theology

Rev. Dr. Boyung Lee, Sr. VP Acad. Affairs/Dean of Faculty, Iliff School of Theology

Dr. K. Samuel Lee, Professor, Claremont School of Theology

Dr. Kirsten S. Oh, Professor, Azusa Pacific University

Dr. G. Sujin Pak, Dean, Boston University School of Theology

Dr. Andrew S. Park, Professor, United Theological Seminary

Dr. Daniel D. Shin, Assoc. Prof. Theo. World Christianity, Drew Theo. School

Dr. Mai-Anh Le Tran, VP Academic Affairs & Academic Dean, Garrett-Evangelical

 

Asian American Ethnic Ministries of the UMC:
Rev. Hak-Soon Paul Chang, Executive Director, Korean Ministry Plan

Rev. Sonxay Chathasone, Chair, Lao/Thai National UMC Caucus

Rev. William Chou Chair, Formosan National UMC Caucus

Rev. Scort Christy, Pres., New Federation of Asian Amer. United Methodists

Rev. Edgar De Jesus, President, Nat. Assoc. of Filipino Am. United Methodists

Rev. Vathanak Heang, Chair, Cambodian National Caucus of the UMC

Rev. Puong Ong Lau, Chair, National Chinese Caucus, UMC

Dr. Christina Lee, President, Cambodian UMC Women’s Network

Rev. Jae Duk Lew, President, Korean National Caucus of the UMC

Rev. Karen Yokota Love, Chair, National Japanese American UMC Caucus

Rev. Timothy Rathod, President, National Indian Caucus, UMC

Rev. Ayla Samson, President, Pakistani UMC Caucus

Monalisa Tuitahi, Executive Director, Pacific Islander National Caucus, UMC

Rev. Kelly Van, Vietnamese National Caucus, UMC

Rev. Nathan V. Vang, Chair, Hmong National Caucus, UMC

Rev. Tsuker Yang, Hmong National Caucus, DS Wisconsin Annual Conference

Rev. Zaki L. Zaki, President, Middle Eastern UMC Caucus

###

Media Contacts: 

Rev. John Oda

Asian American Language Ministry Plan

Email: JOda@umcmission.org

 

Rev. Scort Christy

President of New Federation of Asian American United Methodists

Email: pastorscort@gmail.com


Three Ways to Support
the Atlanta Asian American Community: 

Sign the Asian Americans Advancing Justice Atlanta Statement:  A Community-Centered Response to Violence Against Asian American Communities.

Make a donation to support the Asian American Community of Georgia.

Offer resources like counseling, legal services and translation.

 
To view the previous webinars:
 
Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism: What is Racism and Why Should Asians Get Involved? Webinar #1  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcUli-Iua-s

Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism: Racism from a Young Adult Perspective - Webinar #2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03m6m_FLWv0

Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism: Voices From the African American Community - Webinar #3 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDjsjl7DKHc


Raise Up Your Voice Against Racism: Self-Care and Racism - Webinar #4
https://youtu.be/-JHkiYDMHkQ

 
 
Video of AALM's "Statement Against Racism"
Read by 12 Young Adults from the 12 Asian American
UMC Caucuses

Back in June of 2020, the Asian American Language Ministry Plan committee members wrote and published a "Statement Against Racism".   AALM created a video of this same statement read by 12 different young adults from the 12 different Asian American caucuses. To view the video, please click on the photo above.   Please feel to share this powerful video widely.  If you have questions, please contact Rev. John Oda at JOda@umcmission.org.

 
For more information, please check out AALM's Website at GBGM.
Rev. John Oda
JOda@umcmission.org

Copyright © *Asian American Language Ministry Plan of GBGM


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