Immigrant from Vietnam
How do you think this year’s election outcome might shape the AAPI community’s position in the US?
I think it will create a lot of self-identity conflicts. If Trump were to win, I think that [would] create a lot of complications for me and my friends, especially for my Latinx friends who have families that are undocumented. How do I support or be a good ally to them? Additionally, being a minority but having greater advantages — that creates complications. Especially with the minority myth. Not having been attacked by Trump yet, does that mean I’m considered equal? Am I higher on the hierarchy?
By the year 2044, Asian Americans are expected to become 10% of all voters nationally. How do you think this will shape our political future? Will it?
I don’t think there’s a number that can ever be enough — especially with the many diverse cultures within the Asian community. There’s never enough representation. Specifically, there needs to be more representation for the queer community within the Asian community, and for biracial Asians. There can never be enough. [But] having someone that Asian students can look up to, to be more involved, to know what it would be like to take on these roles, it would help with the climate.
What do you think is the key to unlocking greater AAPI engagement in politics/activism?
Self identity. Within my community there’s not a lot of association with where you came from, with your ethnicity. I think by reclaiming ourselves and knowing the subtle ways that we’re oppressed, learning about our own history, we can unlock better engagement. For example, I just recently learned that my Dad has a French accent while speaking English. He went to a French school and that goes back to colonial times. Learning about our histories and our identities can give us a stronger sense of why we need to rise up and bring up our own issues.