Tuesday’s Link Attack: SuChin Pak, Liz Cho, Jeremy Lin
Y. Peter Kang
Author: Y. Peter Kang
Posted: February 21st, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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Jeremy Lin puts the ball in Asian Americans’ court
Los Angeles Times

The rise of New York Knicks basketball player Jeremy Lin has drawn fans as diverse as Harlem street ballers, late-night talk show hosts and Sarah Palin, but nowhere has his story been more deeply felt than within Asian Americans.

In the Asian American community even third and fourth generations must contend with being treated as perpetual foreigners. So it comes as no surprise that they have embraced the big pop culture bang that created “Linsanity” — a force that already has turned long-entrenched cultural stereotypes on their heads and made the Ivy League-educated point guard the most visible Asian American in the country, if not the world.

Jeremy Lin Craze Bringing Awareness, Pride to Asian-Americans That Have Endured History of Prejudice
New England Sports Network

Mark Liu’s family has been in the U.S. since the 1850s, yet the Chinese-American from Brookline said he is often asked, “Where are you from?” When he responds, “Brookline,” the questioner often says, “No, before that.” Before Lin, the only Asian-American basketball player Liu was aware of was a classmate who played for Brookline High.

Finally, Liu said, an athlete in the four major pro sports not only looks like him but shares some of his own experiences.

“Having an Asian-American in the spotlight makes it particularly validating,” said Liu, 29, a community organizer for the Chinese Progressive Association in Boston, who watched on TV as Lin lit up the Lakers for 38 points on Feb. 10 in a game in which neither Amare Stoudemire nor Carmelo Anthony played due to injury. “It’s important, considering Asian-American history, Chinese immigrants being excluded, Japanese Americans being interned and all that.”

Excitable Boy, They All Said
International Herald Tribune via nytimes.com

Here’s a modest proposal for peace on the Korean Peninsula: Give the kid a break.

Kim Jong-un, not yet 30, passed his first big test as the new leader of North Korea on Monday: He kept his military in check and did not make any moves against the South Korean marines and artillery batteries that were firing live shells just a couple miles off his coastline.

The young general’s restraint might well be seen as nothing short of remarkable. Fighter planes were not scrambled, as my colleague Choe Sang-hun reported, and soldiers stayed in their barracks. Adjust the Western political kaleidoscope a half-turn and Mr. Kim’s decision not to return fire might even appear statesmanlike. Courageous. Gutsy.

In Another Signal of Leadership Change, North Korea Sets Party Meeting
New York Times

North Korea’s Workers’ Party will hold a conference in mid-April, the government announced Monday, affording its new leader, Kim Jong-un, the opportunity to inherit top party posts held by his late father.

Neither the meeting’s date nor the agenda was disclosed, but party conferences have in the past helped leaders bolster their authority. At the most recent conference in September 2010 — the first in 30 years — Mr. Kim made his debut as his father’s successor and was made vice chairman of the party’s Central Military Commission. At this one, he and his closest aides are expected to dole out important party posts among themselves and their trusted associates.

Chen case: Asian-American soldiers endure bias
AP via San Jose Mercury News

The harassment of 19-year-old Danny Chen started in basic training—teasing about his name, repeated questions of whether he was from China, even though he was a born-and-raised New Yorker. He wrote in his journal that he was running out of jokes to respond with.

It got worse in Afghanistan, military investigators told his family. They said the other men in his unit showered Chen, the only Chinese-American in his unit, with racial slurs and physical abuse in the weeks leading up to his suicide in early October. Eight soldiers have been charged in connection with his death.

For some Asian-Americans who have served in the military, the racial prejudice aspect of Chen’s alleged mistreatment comes with little surprise based on what they’ve seen or experienced. But others say the military is a place where everyone’s limits are tested, and that the failure in Chen’s case is one of leadership.

ABC anchor battles contractor over $100,000 in Westchester home renovations
The Real Deal

ABC “Eyewitness News” anchor Liz Cho is engaging in a legal battle over $100,000 worth of renovations at the $2.2 million Yonkers mansion she purchased with her husband last spring. According to the New York Post, Yonkers contractor Cathal Maguire filed a lawsuit last month claiming he’s owed $100,875 from the $430,875 in upgrades he made to the home. Cho and her husband, Evan Gottlieb, countersued weeks later alleging Maguire performed substandard work that will cost more than $300,000 to fix.

Style Expert SuChin Pak: Closed Set with Julie Bensman
The Fashion Spot

Julie Bensman: New York Fashion Week is over! What were some personal highlights?
SuChin Pak: Catching up with friends that don’t live in NYC is always the best. I’ve been a huge fan of LA-based stylist Chriselle for a while now and we got to catch up on shoes, boys, and everything in between over the best bowl of soba noodles at Cocoron in the LES. That and, of course, being wildly distracted with Jeremy Lin!

Humanoids for the home: Drexel University to display robots for National Engineers Week that could become our mechanical maids
Newark Star-Ledger (N.J.)

If you’ve been awaiting the arrival of a robotic servant who’d help take care of the kids, the pets and the house, you might be happy to know this tidbit: Drexel University engineers will be doing some preliminary tweaking on a group of identical “humaniods” that will be shipped out as part of an international robotics research project that will tap human brain power in at least eight American universities.

K-Pop Songwriter’s Racist Tweets Spark Outrage

Jenny Hyun, the co-songwriter behind Girls’ Generation’s “How Great is Your Love” and Chocolat’s “One More Day” recently sparked controversy with a slew of racist tweets.

On February 16, the former singer posted over a dozen derogatory comments on her Twitter against African-Americans. The fuel for her outrage? A dismissive tweet by boxer Floyd Mayweather about NBA star Jeremy Lin:”Jeremy Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he’s Asian. Black players do what he does every night and don’t get the same praise.”

South Korea Cracks Down on Match-Fixing Epidemic
New York Times

The South Korean government on Tuesday announced “no-mercy” measures, including harsh prison terms and life-time bans from sports, to fight match-fixing scandals that have already tainted some of the nation’s most popular professional leagues and have threatened to implicate more.

South Korea, which will host the 2018 Winter Olympics, has been rocked by a snowballing match-rigging scandal since last spring.

It’s official: Korea’s 50 ‘most unique’ hotels

Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) announced the publication of “Korea’s most unique accommodations” on Monday. Travel writers and reporters, as well as high-profile foreign visitors contributed to the selection of the 50 venues.

While the 115-page photograph-filled book will not be for sale and mostly distributed to the 26 international branches of KTO, the organization is planning to make it available in an e-book format on the official Visit Korea website later this month.

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