Human rights. That’s a pretty vague term, isn’t it?
Let me break it down for you.
You have the right not to be dragged out of your home at two in the morning. You have the right to understand what is happening to you. You have the right to speak. You have the right to see your children. You have the right to cross the street. You have the right not to understand English. You have the right not to be beaten for not understanding English.
You have the right to dress in cultural and religious clothing. You have the right to walk on a college campus and not be targeted. You have the right not to be misidentified and shot.
And we have the right to remain silent no longer.
Whether your issue is immigration, police brutality, Islamophobia, or anything else that affects Asian and Pacific Islanders in this country, it’s being voted on in this election. It may not be directly on the table, but you may very well be voting for the person who puts it there. As people who are so often grouped as one in America, AAPIs know that when we speak, we are not only speaking for ourselves. We’re speaking for our families, friends, or neighbors. Maybe you haven’t been a victim of injustice, but someone in our community has. It could be someone close to you - a cousin, classmate, team member. You may not even know. You are casting a vote for someone who can’t - the mother facing deportation and separation from her infant child, the elderly man beaten by police for jaywalking in New York, or the six Sikh Americansshot at their place of worship in 2012.
Human rights are about dignity, humanity, and respect. My #AAPIVote is to uphold human rights, for ALL people.
Chelsea is APIAVote MI's campus liaison at the University of Michigan where she studies as the Ross School of Business.
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