I want my boys to feel pride

Posted on May 10, 2022.

Throughout my life, I've heard the phrase, "you don't belong here." Sadly, my young sons, just 4 and 6 years old, have already heard similar hurtful words and been labeled in ways they don't yet understand.

It's the same phrase we keep hearing in connection with hate crimes against Asian Americans - "you don't belong."

Like we aren't American enough.

I never want my boys – or any child who calls the United States home – to doubt their place in this country or to feel ashamed of their heritage.

No child should ever have to question who they are because of hate or discrimination.

And that's why I'm proud to have helped lead the fight to pass a bill that will take the first meaningful step toward creating a new Asian Pacific American museum in Washington, DC.

The National Museum of Asian Pacific American History and Culture would preserve and honor the culture and contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders throughout American history.

And our contributions have been enormous, Jessica. But all too often, these contributions go unrecognized. And now with the rising numbers of hate crimes against the AAPI community, we need to come together and promote understanding through learning.

We need to send a message to the AAPI community: You belong here. WE belong here. Our contributions to this country are valued.

Our families' stories are not only Asian American stories.

They're American stories.

I'm going to keep fighting until the doors of the National Museum of Asian Pacific American History and Culture swing open, and I can walk hand in hand with my boys, showing them the myriad contributions from the AAPI community and how we've shaped this country for the better.

And most importantly, that they matter and they belong here.