ICE, JetBlue and TSA

January 6, 2009

The New York Times recently did a follow-up story to Hiu Lui Ng, who died under custody of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) last year. It sounds like they've stopped accepting more detainees where he was kept and are investigating his death. I blogged about it a while back, and if you haven't read about him, I warn you that you will probably be angry and appalled.

In other somewhat positive news, JetBlue and TSA workers settle for $240,000 with Raed Jarrar, who was harassed in 2006 for wearing a t-shirt with Arabic writing on it. The t-shirt read "We Will Not be Silent" in English and Arabic. He had to cover his shirt and was moved to the back of the plane. This is apparently a very, very large settlement, though JetBlue officials deny Jarrar's account. I like how they follow that with: "JetBlue believes diversity adds great strength to our company; diversity among our crewmembers as well as our customers," which I don't see being relevant at all. It's like saying, it's okay for me to be racist cause my best friend's black. Sigh.

Now for something a little more lighthearted. Our latest issue of Hyphen has a story about Asian American stand-up comedians. Here's a great little short film about the topic. Enter: Manoj. (I didn't get it the first time I watched it. But now I think it's very clever and subtle). The short film's been on YouTube for a while now, but I recently watched it again with a cousin who was visiting from out of town because he hadn't seen it. 



Momo Chang

Senior Contributing Editor

Momo Chang is the Content Manager at the Center for Asian American Media, and freelances for magazines, online publications, and weeklies. Her writings focus on Asian American communities, communities of color, and youth culture. She is a former staff writer at the Oakland Tribune. Her stories range from uncovering working conditions in nail salons, to stories about “invisible minorities” like Tongan youth and Iu Mien farmers. She has freelances The New York Times, WIRED, and East Bay Express, among other publications.



that's freakin' brilliant!if anyone ever asks you (even though we know no one ever will) about the tension between fobs and american-borns, just point them to that video. perfect!
yeah i saw the clip at the asian american film festival in new york. at first i was like, wait what is this guy serious? and i didn't get whether or not it was a real documentary... but i am slow, sometimes. it's definitely subtle though, and clever. watch it. it's worth your time!
I am so glad people are on the 'Manoj' hype! I listed it as my fave South Asian film of the SFIAAFF '08. My boyfriend (who is South Asian) sent it to his sisters and he made them watch it until they got it. So, don't feel bad. I have been watching Hari Kondablu for awhile, he's a genius.