For the relaunch of NCAPA's newsletter this month, see below a message from National Director Christopher Kang.
Welcome to the relaunch of the NCAPA newsletter! And more importantly, thank you to the NCAPA Board, staff, and all 35 of our member organizations for the warm welcome you have extended me as I embark on this mission with you.
Earlier this week, our community lost an icon with the passing of Grace Lee Boggs. As I considered what #GraceLeeTaughtMe, I was struck by her caution against overestimating the role of activism and underestimating the role of reflection, so I plan to use this column to share some reflections.
One of the phrases you will often hear me say or tweet is “We’re all in this together.” I realize it’s a little cliché, but it resonates with me because we are, all, in this together.
In some ways, this mantra runs counter to the important work we do in educating others that Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders are not a homogenous community. None of us is a “model minority,” and every day, we bust that myth—whether through policy recommendations or simple everyday interactions. We have different needs and concerns—and demand the disaggregated data to prove what our local organizing and services anecdotally tell us to be true.
But the very mission of NCAPA recognizes that there is something that binds us: the pursuit of equality and justice. And since NCAPA’s strength lies in the diversity of its members, I plan to highlight when we are working together to influence policy and shape public narratives.
I also use this phrase to underscore our vision that we are part of the broader racial justice movement. Grace Lee Boggs was an example that AAPIs were leaders in last century's civil rights movement, and it is up to us to be a vocal and visible part of this one. Too many people seek to divide us from other communities of color, whether intentional or uninformed, and we need to teach them—and remind ourselves—that we will not be divided.
Civil rights are human rights are immigrant rights are women’s rights are workers' rights. In our quest for progress, prosperity and well-being for all, we’re all in this together.
Follow Christopher on Twitter: @ChrisNCAPA