While the politicians were beating each other up over Jeb Bush’s comments about Asians and anchor babies, 15-year-old Jason Fong was building a response of his own on Twitter, and the grown ups were listening.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Fong, an intern for AsAmNews and a rising junior at Redondo Beach High School in Los Angeles, responded with the hashtag #MyAsianAmericanStory and the hashtag quickly caught on.
Late to #MyAsianAmericanStory but SO proud. Nisei dad served in the army after WWII incarceration. Pinay mom immigrated. We're here to stay.
— Tamiko Nimura (@TamikoN) August 26, 2015
Spoke no English when I immigrated at age 6. Now I teach college students how to critically think in English. #MyAsianAmericanStory
— Nancy Wang Yuen (@nancywyuen) August 25, 2015
— AAJC (@AAAJ_AAJC) August 25, 2015
— Anirvan Chatterjee (@anirvan) August 25, 2015
Fong sees comments like those made by Jeb Bush as part of emphasizing the “otherness” in Asians. People incorrectly assume that Asian Americans are not Americans. Fong thinks its too easy to cast Asian Americans off to the side as not a part of American society.
“I hope that people can look at this tag, and know that Asians and Asian Americans are part of the American narrative,” he said.
“Our opinions and our stories matter just as much as those who immigrated less recently.”
You can read what inspires Fong at such a young age to be so active in Asian American community affairs in the Los Angeles Times.