It was the night of the election when text messages started flying back and forth between a group of my close friends. ‘Seriously?’, ‘Guys, it’s almost over,’ ‘My heart is heavy,’ are just some of the messages expressing dismay over what we were all witnessing. I was confident, despite how much some people disliked Hillary Clinton when Americans went to the polls, there would only one clear choice. At the very least, one obvious non-choice. Instead, 62.6 million Americans (46.1%) justified his vileness by voting for him.
The venting, discussions, and strategizing followed over the next several days. I’d come back to my phone after a few hours and find several dozen unread messages. We have all have experience with Vietnamese youth organizing working under the veil of ‘leadership development, ’ but it is evident there is much more to do.
We decided it is time for our peers and us to step up in a major way. We will no longer be modest with our political views. We will be unapologetic about seeking progressive change. We unequivocally believe in an equitable society for all Americans, which includes people of color, and are willing to do what it takes to achieve it.
As the days passed, we concluded the conversation should move off of text messaging and onto another medium. We also wanted to scale these conversations to a much broader audience of change makers, activists, leaders, and all those who believe we can do better. That’s when the AAPI Action Slack community was born.
Slack is modern real-time chat tool which in its beginnings was (and still is) used by teams and companies but has since grown into a platform used to build communities. The AAPI Slack community is not meant to replicate any of the great work being done already. In fact, one of our goals is to use this community to highlight that work. We know there are many organizations who have been ‘fighting the good fight’ for years. Our intention is to provide a space, beyond traditional email and social media groups, for all stakeholders of the AAPI community to connect, share, organize, and take action.
I invite you to join us! http://aapiaction.org.