WASHINGTON, Feb. 23 — Asian American leaders joined together to criticize AsianWeek for printing Kenneth Eng’s column “Why I Hate Blacks” in its February 23rd edition. The leaders condemn the piece as irresponsible journalism, blatantly racist, replete with stereotypes, and deeply hurtful to African Americans. They called on AsianWeek to take immediate action and issue an unequivocal apology, terminate their relationship with Kenneth Eng, print an editorial refuting the column, review their editorial policy and process, and hold those responsible accountable.
The leaders call on all individuals to contact AsianWeek on this matter: AsianWeek, Tel: (415) 397-0220, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
An online petition is available at: http://www.capaweb.org/awpetition
“Eng’s article is unacceptable and offensive not only to African Americans, but to all Americans,” said Karen K. Narasaki, President and Executive Director of the Asian American Justice Center. “AsianWeek has a responsibility to its readers and to the community to take immediate and appropriate action to repair the serious damage it has caused by publishing this piece.”
“Most Asian Americans would not be here in America today, but for the civil rights movement led by African Americans that resulted in the change to racist immigration quotas,” said Stewart Kwoh, Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center of Southern California.
“The publication of these racist statements is completely irresponsible and damaging to all our communities. Not only should there be a retraction but a serious effort to repair the harm caused,” said Gen Fujioka, Program Director of the Asian Law Caucus.
“Asian Americans should recognize the debt we all owe African Americans who blazed the civil rights path we have walked on in our journey to equality,” said Dale Minami, President of the Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans.
“Eng’s column harkens back to a era of Jim Crow and bigotry that should not be tolerated in our society,” said Eric K. Yamamoto, Professor of Law
“Eng’s vile racism is a setback to the efforts of people of color working together against discrimination, oppression and injustice,” said Keith Kamisugi, Associate Director for Communications at the Equal Justice Society. “His words alone are disgusting; that it was printed in a prominent English-language Asian Pacific American newspaper is shameful.”
“Asian Americans do not share Eng’s extremely racist views. Asian Americans need to take this opportunity to reach out and build a constructive dialog,” said Yvonne Lee, Former Member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.
“It is critical that our Asian American community stands up and tells America — and particularly our African American brothers and sisters — that our community has no tolerance for the racism expressed by Mr. Eng,” said David Chiu, President of the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area.
Asian American Justice Center (www.advancingequality.org), formerly known as NAPALC, is a national organization dedicated to defending and advancing the civil and human rights of Asian Americans. It works closely with three affiliates — the Asian American Institute in Chicago (www.aaichicago.org), the Asian Law Caucus (www.asianlawcaucus.org) in San Francisco, and the Asian Pacific American Legal Center (www.apalc.org) in Los Angeles.