Tag Archives: identity

Open season: documentary film showing

 Photo Credits to Chuleeanan Svetvilas and Hyphen Magazine

Join filmmaker Mark Tang for a screening and discussion of documentary “Open Season” (co-directed by Lu Lippold) Five years in the making, this documentary offers an in-depth investigation of the complex issues surrounding the violent confrontation where a Hmong hunter killed six white hunters in rural Wisconsin.

When and where?

  • Monday, April 16 4:30 p.m.
  • Brookdale Library
  • 6125 Shingle Creek PKWY

On November 21, 2004, 6 Caucasians hunters were killed by a Hmong immigrant during a violent deer hunting confrontation. What really happened? Mark Tang, co-director and producer of the documentary “Open Season” will share his findings and experiences.

It’s free and open to teen grades 6 and up.

Click here for more information about the documentary and co-directors.

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Posted by on April 11, 2012 in Community news


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Gordon Hirabayashi, 1918-2012

Received word through social media that civil rights hero Gordon Hirabayashi, best known for being one of the few people to openly defy the government’s unconstitutional internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, has died. He was 93.

Hirabayashi was arrested, convicted and imprisoned, and eventually appealed his case to the Supreme Court (Hirabayashi vs. United States) — the first challenge to Executive Order 9066. The Court ruled against him, 9-0. However, his wartime convictions were successfully overturned forty years later.

Rest in peace. Here’s the Facebook post from Mr. Hirabayashi’s son, Jay Hirabayashi, announcing his passing:

My Dad, Gordon K. Hirabayashi, who was ninety-three, passed away early this morning. He was an American hero besides being a great father who taught me about the values of honesty, integrity, and justice. My Mother, Esther Hirabayashi, who was eighty-seven, also passed away this morning about ten hours later. She was a beautiful, intelligent, generous soul. Although my parents were divorced, they somehow chose to leave us on the same day. I am missing them a lot right now.

Here’s a good summary of Hirabayashi’s landmark case:

During World War II, Gordon Hirabayashi was a 24-year-old senior at the University of Washington – an American citizen by birth – when, as acts of civil disobedience, he defied a curfew imposed on persons of Japanese ancestry and refused to comply with military orders forcing Japanese Americans to leave the West Coast into concentration camps. He appealed his convictions to the U.S. Supreme Court, which, in one of the most infamous cases in American history, held that the curfew order was justified by military necessity and was, therefore, constitutional. A year and a half later, in Korematsu v. United States, the Court relied wholly on its decision in Hirabayashi to uphold the constitutionality of the mass removal of Japanese Americans.

Forty years later, in 1983, represented by a remarkable and dedicated team of lawyers, Mr. Hirabayashi reopened his case, filing a petition for writ of error coram nobis in Seattle, Washington, seeking vacation of his wartime convictions on the ground that the government, during World War II, had suppressed, altered, and destroyed material evidence relevant to the issue of military necessity. In 1986, the Ninth Circuit, in an opinion authored by Judge Mary Schroeder, vacated both Mr. Hirabayashi’s curfew and exclusion convictions on proof of the allegations of governmental misconduct.
Hirabayashi v. United States, 828 F.2d 591 (9th Cir. 1987).

Next month, the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality will host a major conference to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Ninth Circuit opinion in the Hirabayashi v. United States coram nobis case. It’s happening February 11 at Seattle University. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, and to register, go here.

UPDATE: Here’s a statement on Gordon Hirabayashi’s passing from the Korematsu Institute and the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice: Fred T. Korematsu Institute for Civil Rights and Education and the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice Remember Civil Rights Leader Gordon Hirabayashi.


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Posted by on January 9, 2012 in National news


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Prayers on the Prairie to air on SPNN

Prayers on the Prairie: Asian-Pacific Minnesotan Religious Practices, an orginal documentary jointly produced by the Council on Asian-Pacific Minnesotans and the Minnesota Humanities Center will air on SPNN this November and December.  This project is funded with money from the Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund that was created with the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008.

Asian-Pacific Americans make up 4% of Minnesota’s population (210,000 per Census 2010).  Minnesota is home to the largest Tibetan, Karen, and urban Hmong communities in the United States.  They are small in numbers, and they are an important part of Minnesota.  Their stories and history are Minnesota’s stories and history.  They share in many of the same values and traditions that make Minnesota great.  And they are also different – the biggest difference being religion.  While many Asian-Pacific Minnesotans have strong Christian traditions and church communities, others have different religious traditions that are too little known and understood by others.

Prayers on the Prairie: Asian-Pacific Minnesotan Religious Practices is an attempt at bridging this gap in knowledge and understanding.  The project features an educational documentary and accompanying Informational Booklet. The documentary features segments detailing five religious traditions of Asian-Pacific Minnesotans: Ancestral Worship, Animism and Hmong Shamanism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam. The segments introduce and draw on the experience and expertise of experts and practitioners describing how differing religious communities are able to thrive, practice, and live out their religious tenants in the land of blue skies, prairie lands, and 10,000 lakes. The Informational Booklet supplements the documentary by providing background information and, in some cases, further illuminations on some of the tenants of the religions.

The program is scheduled on Channel 14 in St. Paul, the multi-faith channel.

The initial playback dates are:

  • 11/29/2011 1:00 pm CH14
  • 12/1/2011 2:30 pm CH14
  • 12/4/2011 9:00 am CH14
  • 12/4/2011 2:30 pm CH14
  • 12/10/2011 8:00 am CH14

If you would like more information or copies of the DVD and an Informational Booklet please contact us at

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Posted by on November 29, 2011 in CAPM news


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Embracing Cambodia: The Yearning for Home, Aug. 13-Sept 14

Embracing Cambodia: The Yearning for Home — Opening reception


Saturday, August 13 · 1:00pm – 4:00pm
UROC Gallery

2001 Plymouth Avenue North 55411
Minneapolis, MN
More Info
Phira Rehm has never seen Cambodia, but the beauty of its art, people, and folklore captivate her. Come along as she shares her own work together with her family’s collection of Cambodian paintings, Buddha and temple figures, and shares her struggle to find understanding and place somewhere between two cultures.There will be feasts for the eyes, ears and mind including wonderful art, food and local musicians playing traditional Cambodia music.

The show will continue at UROC through September 14, 2011.

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Posted by on August 4, 2011 in Community news


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Upcoming Events “Prayers on the Prairie” and “Be Bold, Boldly Be”

The Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans and MN Humanities Center invites the community to the screening of “Prayers on the Prairie” – a documentary on Asian Minnesotan religious practices.

  • Thursday, June 30th at 6:00pm
  • Located at the Brookdale 8 Cinemas
  • 5810 Shingle Creek Parkway, Brooklyn Center, MN 55430

Free and open to the public.

  • Seats are limited. Please RSVP at 651-757-1740.
  • Limit 4 tickets per person.


The Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans invites the community to “Be Bold, Boldly Be”!

  • Wednesday, June 29th at 7:00pm
  • Located at Neighborhood House/Wellstone Center
  • 179 Robie Street East, Saint Paul, MN 55107
  • Free and open to the public – youth and teens are encouraged to attend!


For more info, contact Saymoukda D. Vongsay, Arts and Culture Heritage Series Curator

Email: saymoukda.vongsay [at]

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Posted by on June 27, 2011 in CAPM Events, Community news


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Clear Channel airs educational piece on Hmong History

In agreement to parties involved in protesting the hurtful KDWB parody song issue, Clear Channel aired an educational piece on the Hmong history during Memorial weekend

On 5/29/11, Long Yang, Vice President of Special Guerilla Unit Veterans & Families, Frank Brown, Justice for All Organizer at TakeAction Minnesota and Liz Kalia Xiong, TakeAction Minnesota Hmong Leader, member of Community Action Against Racism discussed an inappropriate and hurtful parody song played on KDWB.

They also shared stories about Hmong culture and their history here in the Twin Cities and the service of Hmong veterans who fought with the U.S. during the Vietnam War.

The show aired on 6:00 AM on KDWB (101.3), 7:00 AM on KFAN (1130), K102 and Cities 97, 9:00 AM on KFXN (690), 5:00 PM on KTLK (100.3), and 10:30 PM on KOOL 108.

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Posted by on June 9, 2011 in Community news


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