How 80-20 can make a difference in a case like Vincent
Chin's? Here is how.
BACKGROUND OF THE VINCENT CHIN MURDER
In 1982, Am. Auto workers were angry over Japanese imports. In a
Detroit bar one evening, Vincent Chin, a Chinese Am., was taken to be
a Japanese by two auto workers. They quarreled and fought. Later,
in a parking lot, the two auto workers killed Vincent by bashing his
brains out with a baseball bat.
A Michigan court fined the two murderers $3000 each. The AsAm
community rose in protest, getting the Fed government to step in.
Despite some early successes, ultimately the 2 murderers were
acquitted and did not serve a day in jail. A civil suit ordering one to
pay $1.5 million to Chin's estate was not carried out because the
murderer fled. Vincent Chin's mother, disgusted with the injustice,
left the USA for China.
HOW 80-20 WOULD HAVE MADE A DIFFERENCE
80-20's impact in a similar case in the future will not be
qualitatively but quantitative. The AsAm orgs of that period did a
magnificent job. Quantitatively, 80-20 can communicate with
710,000 AsAm families and almost all of the AsAm activists several
times per week. There is not a single AsAm organization today that
has even 1/10 that ability. Politics depend on numbers. And the
injustice seen in Vincent Chins case was a reflection of our lack of
an effective political action committee at that time.
Helen Zia, a co-founder of "American Citizens for Justice (ACJ),"
that played a key role in rallying the AsAm to fight the injustice in
Chins case summarized the situation well. She spoke of the need for
a strong national APA organization to deal with hate crime in a
consistent and experienced manner. "Otherwise we are reinventing
the wheel in different regions where hate crimes occur."
A SALUTE TO AsAm CIVIC ORGS OF THAT PERIOD
The good deeds that those civic orgs. have done should not be
forgotten. 80-20 will use this opportunity to salute their magnificent
Outraged, our community rose to the challenge of an unjust
Michigan court. For the first time, Asian Ams. realized that in the
eyes of a lot of Americans there was no difference between Japanese,
Chinese and other Asians. AsAm organizations like ACJ, APALC,
CAA (Chinese for Affirmative Action), JACL, OCA, & local orgs. of
the Filipino and Korean communities in Michigan all worked together
to organize demonstrations & a letter writing campaign. They wrote
to politicians, the press, and the U.S. Department of Justice
demanding that the two men be charged with violating Chin's civil
rights." Under that magnificent pressure, the case was re-tried in a
Federal District Court, ACJ hired a lawyer and became "a friend of
the court" or "Amicus curiae."
HOW COME 80-20 WASN'T ACTIVE IN WEN HO LEE's CASE?
80-20 was not active in any of the spy cases *, whether it was Wen
Ho Lee, Captain James Yee or Katrina Leung. There are two major
reasons. First, all three worked for our intelligence services
even before they were accused of spying against our nation. In
international espionage, huge investment is made to deceive "the
whole wide world." Believing in the apparent truth could be a BIG
mistake. Second, if one of those accused turned out to be a real spy
against our nation, the consequences could be severe for us all.
Asian Ams want 80-20 to be straight with them, even when the
truth may not be what they want to hear. 80-20 tries to serve you
with integrity. 80-20 stands tall and fights for the AsAm community.
Visit http://www.80-20initiative.net/unity1.html to see the numerous
battles 80-20 has fought & won for the AsAm. community.
Join 80-20. It can make a difference in your life. We showed how
80-20 can make a difference in unfortunate cases like the LA riot,
the campaign finance scandals of 1997, & a case like Vincent Chin's.
Using a credit card, visit
http://www.80-20initiative.net/membership.html (easy to use) or
PERSONAL checks are payable to "80-20 PAC", mailed to:
Jing-Li Yu Director of Projects
P.O. Box 527340 Flushing, NY 11352-7340 .
Write down your E-MAIL address & PHONE no. on the BACK of the
check. Life membership is $1,000; Family (2 voters) is $50; Basic
Membership is $35; Student membership is $15.
* 80-20 did use its mass email to let AsAms know where they
might donate money to orgs. raising money for Wen Ho Lee. 80-20
also has a policy to aid AsAm scientists & engineers who face trumped-
up government charges that fail to stand up in courts. Visit: