Dith Pran, Humanitarian and Photojournalist for the New York Times has died of Pancreatic Cancer. A survivor of the Cambodian holocaust, he was the subject of the Oscar winning movie "The Killing Fields."
New York Times photojournalist Dith Pran, a Humanitarian, Cambodian Genocide survivor, and the subject of the Oscar winning 1984 movie "The Killing Fields" has died of pancreatic cancer this morning March 30, 2008 in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
Last week, surrounded by family and friends in the hospital, Pran, 65, known for his upbeat personality quipped to Star-Ledger staff reporter Judy Peet that he intends to win his battle with cancer, "Food, medicine and meditation are good soldiers, and I am ready to fight."
But ultimately "this is my path and I must go where it takes me." He said he wanted to use his condition to encourage people to do early cancer screening.
Pran had spent his life since his survival from the brutality by Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge regime from 1975 to 1979, to raise awareness of the Cambodian holocaust and to campaign against genocide everywhere. He said in an interview in recent weeks, hoping that others will be able to carry on his work, "If they can do that for me, my spirit will be happy."
Pran was an assistant and translator in war-torn Cambodia from 1973 to 1975 to Sydney Schanberg, a New York Times correspondent. On April 17, 1975, while most Americans and other foreigners had already evacuated Cambodia, Schanberg had decided to stay to witness the fall of its capital city Phnom Penh to the communist Khmer Rouge forces led by Pol Pot. This would be just two weeks before the fall of another city, Saigon, Vietnam to North Vietnamese forces which immediately renamed Saigon to Ho Chi Minh City.
At Schanberg's urging Pran did not evacuate Cambodia but stayed behind to continue assisting and translating for his friend and colleague, a decision out of friendship and loyalty that put Pran in harms...
A Lifetime Achievement Award was presented posthumously to the late Sam Chu Lin by the Asian American Journalist Association during its annual convention.
The AAJA also presented Special Awards to the late newspaper owner Chinn Ho, Bobbi Bowman and Dmae Roberts. Excellence in News Coverage Awards were presented to honorees in eleven categories.
Read more about the honorees from this news release from AAJA.
The late Sam Chu Lin , former pioneer broadcast television reporter for CBS News and other news outlets including KTTV-TV (LA), KTLA-TV (LA), KRON-TV (SF) , and KOOL-TV (PHX) , SF Examiner , Asian Week and Rafu Shimpo received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Asian American Journalists Association.
Fellow journalist, community leader and pioneer television broadcaster Chris Chow comments on the award to Sam Chu Lin :
"AAJA is to be commended for giving its 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award to Sam Chu Lin .
AAJA is cut from the same cloth as Sam and aspires to the same ideals as Sam and is one organization in the field of his profession that has recognized his contributions, leadership and worth. This is like being honored by one's own community.
Sam was honored by the Chinese Historical Society of America, the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, the Organization of Chinese Americas and now the Asian American Journalists Association for his pioneering lifetime achievements in media and journalism and America.
I really regret not having been there for him at Salinas two years ago for the CACA convention, where he gave one of his greatest speeches.
His message to CACA and people everywhere was essentially this: "Now it's your turn to speak out."
I wish you Judy and your sons Mark and Christopher the best in enjoying this honor because now an audience not only of his peers but of his descendants in the profession, the new generations of Asian American journalists and media mongers will...
Opportunities Remain to Promote the Educational and Social Development of Asian American Youth and Their Peers.
The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), CAA| Chinese for Affirmative Action, and amici groups serving Asian American youth and families across the country expressed satisfaction that five of the nine Supreme Court justices upheld the use of race-conscious measures to foster diversity in K-12 education in its decision today in the cases of Meredith v. Jefferson County Board of Education, et al., and Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1. However, they also raised concern that the Supreme Court has limited the options available to school districts in adopting voluntary school integration plans. Civil rights groups AALDEF and CAA| Chinese for Affirmative Action today asserted a compelling interest for the nations public schools to actively ensure equal access to quality education and a diverse learning environment.
In both Seattle, Washington and Louisville, Kentucky, locally elected school boards voluntarily adopted measures to promote racial integration in their public school systems. Under these plans, the cities considered a students race as one factor among others in kindergarten to 12th-grade school assignments. Last fall, AALDEF, CAA, and 14 Asian American community organizations nationwide filed an amicus brief in support of the respondents.
AALDEF Staff Attorney Khin Mai Aung, co-counsel to the amici groups, said, Asian American educational and youth organizations across the country believe that local school boards must have the flexibility to promote racial integration. It is significant in the Supreme Courts decision today that five out of nine justices upheld the consideration of race as one factor to ensure the diverse classrooms that are critical to preparing children for our increasingly multicultural society, notwithstanding that these particular plans were...
Award-winning Journalist and author William Wong comments on the national firestorm that AsianWeek has created by publishing writer Kenneth Che-Tew Eng's "Hate" Column
March 5, 2007
By William Wong
For nine years (1989-1998), I wrote a regular column for AsianWeek, the San Francisco-based weekly newspaper that bills itself as "The Voice of Asian America" but that now has egg foo yung on its face for its incredibly stupid decision to publish a racist rant ("Why I Hate Blacks") by a young writer named Kenneth Che-Tew Eng, or as AsianWeek labels his (now former) column, "God of the Universe."
I appreciated the forum AsianWeek provided me. It gave me an opportunity to explore numerous angles, tangents and pathways of the complex Asian American experience, including uber-sensitive yellow-black relationships.
I tried my best to do this exploration in the context of a changing America that has racial and ethnic ghosts it wishes would stay in an overflowing closet. I never ranted or raved or engaged in racist language or stereotypes (at least that's what I thought). I felt my "voice" was mostly reasoned, respectful, honest, and thoughtful (again, my opinion).
I even included a number of my AsianWeek columns revised and rewritten slightly in my first book, Yellow Journalist: Dispatches from Asian America, published in 2001 by Temple University Press.
In my resume and one-page biography, I include AsianWeek as a publication I have written for. Now I am not so sure I want to advertise this fact as part of my lengthy writing career.
The recent public flap over the Kenneth Eng column is more than just about a young Chinese American writer spewing hatred in the pages of AsianWeek. It's also about AsianWeek itself, its ownership, how America's dizzying array of racial and ethnic groups get along or don't get along, and how their stories are told or not told, by whom and for whom.
Kenneth Che-Tew Eng
AsianWeek's Statement and Apology issued by AsianWeek's Editor-in-Chief Samson Wong.
SAN FRANCISCO (U.S. ASIAN WIRE)
AsianWeek sincerely regrets and apologizes for publishing New York-based contributor Kenneth Engs column in the issue of February 23, 2007. AsianWeek rejects Engs biased views on a critical segment of American society, African Americans.
While AsianWeek continues to truly believe in diversity of opinion and freedom of the press, we are also very aware that the promotion of hate speech is not appropriate, nor should it be encouraged.
Given that the genesis of the American civil rights movement was borne primarily by the African American community through blood and perseverance, the failing of our editorial process in allowing this opinion piece to go forward, was an insensitive and callous mistake that should never have been made by our publication.
We will be reviewing that editorial process and making any changes necessary to prevent this from ever happening again.
The condemnation of this serious lapse in editorial judgment was rightfully taken by civic and community leaders and organizations, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Congressman Mike Honda, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
Readers of AsianWeek over the past 27-year history clearly know that we reject any racist agenda. On the contrary, our editorial policy has led the way in interracial and multicultural strength and diversity.
As a publication whose motto is the voice of the Asian American community, we are humbled and overwhelmed at reader response not only chastising our editorial process, but strongly urging our paper to sever all ties to this contributor. We have heard the call and Mr. Eng has been terminated from writing for the paper.
In the future, we will take extra steps to ensure that while diversity of opinion remains a constant pillar in AsianWeek editorial policy,...