Older immigrants are responding to the pandemic with startling resourcefulness, as their American offspring have discovered

Photo: bee32/iStock/Getty Images Plus

When the pandemic began and the country was bum-rushing grocery stores for toilet paper, Katherine Fung’s mother was strangely calm.

“I overheard her saying to a friend on the phone, ‘Soon we’ll be boiling roots to survive. I’ve been through that before,’” says Fung, a Brooklyn-based journalist.

Fung’s mom, who grew up in a province called Guangxi in mainland China, learned self-sufficiency from a young age. The oldest of six children, she dropped out of school to do housework and help her mother farm. There were times when they didn’t have much to eat.

These times have felt familiar to…


How the Ask versus Guess divide explains the complicated reality of growing up Asian American

A parent helps a child tie their shoelaces.
A parent helps a child tie their shoelaces.
Photo: Images By Tang Ming Tung/Getty Images

“Uncle, can I take your plate to the kitchen?” That’s what my cousin asked my father after a grand dinner to welcome her family to our home upon their arrival from Taiwan. So polite, my mom said. Such good manners, my dad added.

My eight-year-old sister and I, then 10, didn’t say anything — we just excused ourselves and ran off to the living room to get our weekly dose of The Incredible Hulk. Our teenaged cousin soon joined us, her hands still damp from helping to wash the dishes. …


When my son became a prime-time TV star, ‘Hudson Yang’s dad’ became my most prominent title

Illustration: Fran Caballero

There’s no getting around it: I’ve been eclipsed by my son.

I mean this both physically and metaphorically. At age 15 and a sturdy 6-foot-2, Hudson quite literally blocks me completely from view when I stand behind him. …


“NEW FRONTIERS: THE MANY WORLDS OF GEORGE TAKEI,” BEING EDITED BY THE TEAM BEHIND “SECRET IDENTITIES” AND “SHATTERED,” IS A COMPANION VOLUME TO THE JAPANESE AMERICAN NATIONAL MUSEUM’S HISTORIC EXHIBITION ON THE LIFE OF THE ACTOR, ACTIVIST AND CULTURAL ICON. THE ANTHOLOGY WILL SHOWCASE ORIGINAL WORK OF DIVERSE CREATORS ON THEMES THAT HAVE SHAPED TAKEI’S LIFE, SUCH AS INCARCERATION, IMMIGRATION, LGBTQ EQUALITY, BLACK LIVES MATTER, STEREOTYPES IN MEDIA AND THE RISE OF DIGITAL CULTURE

LOS ANGELES — The team behind the groundbreaking Asian American superhero anthologies SECRET IDENTITIES and SHATTERED, in partnership with the Japanese American National Museum, have issued…


“WE, THE UNDERSIGNED, HEREBY APOLOGIZE TO BERNIE SANDERS SUPPORTERS WHO FEEL HURT, DISMISSED OR SILENCED”

Let’s beat Trump. Then sit down and talk about how to fix the future.

SIGN THE PETITION

Dear brothers and sisters who Felt the Bern:

The primary campaign was long, contentious and intense. People — including many who should’ve known better — said things in the course of the war of ideas that were harsh, bitter, unkind and unfair.

But when all is said and done, the truth is that Bernie’s ideas and your passion made a huge difference. They changed the path of the…


#ITooAmHarvard

Dear fellow Harvard grads of all years and schools:

We’ve nearly arrived at the time when voting for the University’s Board of Overseers will begin — ballots should be arriving in your mailboxes shortly. And just as the presidential election this year is particularly contested and critically important, so is the Board of Overseers election — not least because Harvard has become the front line for a series of continued assaults on a core principle of the university’s culture and academic promise: Diversity.

Diversity of heritage and faith, of nationality and culture, of class and familial background, and yes, of…


If you’ve seen the most recent issue of The Hollywood Reporter — the industry news magazine that remains one of showbiz’s must-read staples—you’ll note that its cover showcases its annual Oscar Actress Roundtable, one of its best-read and highest profile features of the year. You might also note that, yet again, every performer represented in the Roundtable is white.

To his credit, Stephen Galloway, THR’s editor, did in fact note this himself, and even wrote an editor’s note that’s a mea culpa for the obvious lack of diversity in the issue’s cover story.

But in doing so, he blames the…


If you feel outraged, as you should, that tragedies in Paris get media attention while those in Beirut, Lebanon and Garissa, Kenya do not, consider whether you choose to actively inform yourselves about those parts of the world when people aren’t dying in tragic terrorist attacks.

My guess is that everyone reading this can point to Paris on a blank map, and couldn’t do the same for Beirut or Garissa (whose massacre occurred in April, by the way). Heck, many of the people complaining about the coverage disparities are posting about “Paris, Beirut, and Kenya” because they’re forgetting Beirut is a city and Kenya is a country. Check out their statuses and think about that.

The sad fact is, media in the U.S. is a commercial industry that ultimately pays attention to the topics its consumers demand. If a cover story of the Paris attacks sells…


In the wake of our most recent horrific gun tragedy — the murder of nine and wounding of seven at Oregon’s Umpqua Community College — President Barack Obama delivered his most resolute and meaningful statement on gun control in his two terms in office. …


At this point, you must have read the article in Hollywood’s go-to industry blog for real-time news, Deadline, suggesting that the swing toward diversity on network TV had “gone too far.” My recent story for the Wall Street Journal Online explored some of the reasons why the phenomenon of television that looks like America has only just begun. The bottom line? Diverse TV is drawing new audiences, while also engaging traditional (read: non-Hispanic white) viewers. And that’s good for the networks’ bottom line.

Some of the charts I created for that story weren’t included for reasons of space (and others were posted in a fashion that cut off key data). Here’s my complete set of visualizations created for the piece, in living color…like TV itself.

Jeff Yang

columnist, @CNNOpinion (https://www.cnn.com/profiles/jeff-yang) & Inkstone (https://www.inkstonenews.com/author/jeff-yang); cohost, @TheyCallUsBruce podcast

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