Officer Vong’s Speech at the 61st CADC Banquet

Good Evening ladies, and gentlemen, distinguished guests, Madam Mayor.  It is an honor to be part of this great event and to be speaking before you.  I am very grateful and humbled by this amazing award.

I am Johnny Vong, and I have been a police officer for 13 years, proudly serving our great city of San Francisco.  I am currently assigned to Ingleside Station, and with the support from Captain Hart, I patrol the area of Visitacion Valley with my partner Matt Leong, who could not be here with us tonight.

Today's event theme is Community and Unity, and I wanted to discuss how this pertains to public safety.  Our communities are diverse - we have people with different ethnicities, cultures, languages, and beliefs.  But we all share one thing in common, and that is we are all San Franciscans. 

I believe I speak for everyone when I say that we want our neighborhoods to be a place where our children, our seniors, and ourselves can feel safe.  Only united, can we strive towards the goal of making our communities safer. We need to send a message to those looking to commit bad deeds in our neighborhoods that we will not tolerate crime.

The police are only a part of the solution to prevent crime.  Another part, and an important one, is the community, because the police can only be effective with your trust and support.  When you witness a crime, after making sure you are safe, pick up the phone and report it to the police Be the best witness you can be by making a mental note of what you saw or record the event with your cell phone if possible.  I have come across many cases that were solved because a member of the community was willing to tell me what they saw, or they provided me with video surveillance from their security cameras. People who do bad things need to be held accountable.

Lastly, and most importantly, care and look out for each other.  Introduce yourself, and get to know your neighbors and the members of your community.  Even when you do not share a common language, sometimes waving hello to someone can be enough to establish friendly relations.  An example of looking out for each other is if you see a suspicious person, someone you never saw before, looking into your neighbor's car or yard - alert the police so we can investigate.  Those who look to commit crimes do not like to be in neighborhoods where everyone is watching and looking out for each other.

*The speech was delivered by Officer Vong at the 61st CADC's annual banquet on September 20th, 2019.

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Keynote Speech by Sasanna Yee at the 61st CADC Banquet

Thank you for this recognition. My name is Sasanna Yee, Yu Jia Wen and my pronouns are she and they.  I want to acknowledge the First Nation Ohlone people and to recognize that we are settlers on their land.  I want to acknowledge my ancestors from China. I am the proud granddaughter of Huang Yik Oi and Yan Miu Yu.  I am the courageous daughter of Huang Yue Yuan and Yu Yun Wing.

I am a first generation Chinese-American, born and raised in Visitacion Valley, in the southeast corner of San Francisco.  My own journey has always been one of transmuting and alchemizing pain and anger into love, healing, unity, and illumination.  As a youth, I played a certain mantra in my mind over and over as a result of hearing countless stories of violence against Chinese people, against black people, against immigrants.  I would chant, Peace in the southeast. Peace in the southeast. I like the sound of that, don’t you? :). 

So I too have a dream...that there’s unity in diversity, that people from different cultural backgrounds can peacefully coexist without living in fear and hatred of one another.  However, a nightmare occurred on January 8th. While going out for her morning walk, my 89 year old vulnerable grandmother was brutally beaten up within inches of her life by an 18 year old young man.  This is a tragedy all around, for both families. Violence divides, hurting another being is never OK.

We are in September now.  It is almost 9 months after the attack, yet the pain remains for me and my family.  My mom and aunt visits my Popo every single day. My Popo was 100% independent taking the bus to Chinatown for groceries, hanging out with her friends.  Now she’s 100% dependent, not able to speak, eat, or walk. You bet I’m angry that this happened and keeps happening to our most cherished and vulnerable citizens.  If you’re not angry about all the violence, segregation, and racism that is happening right now, you are asleep. If you are angry, then you are alive and have a beating heart.  Yet we are so scared of our anger. We’re not taught how to harness this powerful emotion for good. If you are outraged about the way you were treated before in your life, good!  Let’s channel that energy and redirect it in a creative way. However, if we are not mindful about our anger, then it turns into violence. 

A simple way to evaluate anger is with two equations.

Anger x Hopelessness =Violence, Resentment, and Abuse.  It results in Heinous crimes like what happened to my grandmother.

And the inverse of that is: 

Anger x Inspiration = Compassionate, Inspired Action and Activism. The Latin root word for Inspiration is inspiratus meaning to breath into.  Remember to breath when we feel anger arise. By taking a mindful breath, we can calm the nervous system and gain a moment of clarity to make quick smart decisions especially when faced with injustice.  Let’s all take another breath to feel the effects of it.

With a breath, we gain calmness and clarity.  From there we can creatively respond to any situation without causing more harm.  I have used this strategy successfully when I was held at gunpoint. I took a calm breath and looked this person in the eyes and felt his fear.  I was able to deescalate the situation and get out of it. When my grandma was attacked, I transformed my anger into Inspired Action by making a Facebook live video immediately at the crime scene.  If it’s to be, it’s up to me. I shared that violence is never OK, that hurt people are hurting people, and that we need to stop living in fear and hatred of one another. We need to come together to bring Peace to the Southeast Corner of SF.  And I’m grateful that with the help of Marlene Tran and many others sharing the news, it got a lot of coverage that led to the arrest of the young man. It also led to more conversations and awareness around this and similar issues. That is the power of unity in action.  That is the power of transforming anger into positive and compassionate impact.

To conclude, I want to share a visionary poem by June Jordan who is a Jamaican American bisexual poet, teacher, activist.  In her writings, she explored issues of gender, race, immigration, and representation.

Activism is not issue-specific.
It’s a moral posture that, steady state,
    propels you forward, from one hard
    hour to the next.
Believing that you can do something
    to make things better, you do
    something, rather than nothing.
You assume responsibility for the
    privilege of your abilities.
    You do whatever you can.
You reach beyond yourself in your
    imagination, and in your wish for
    understanding, and for change.
You admit the limitations of individual
    perspectives.
You trust somebody else.
You do not turn away.

So thank you to each and everyone here for staying in the fire and not turning away.  For showing up to vote, to voice, and to make a difference. I am humbled to be amongst giants, to be amongst veterans of this work.  Thank you!

*The keynote speech was delivered by Sasanna Yee on September 20th, 2019 during the CADC's annual banquet.

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CADC November 2019 Election Endorsements

CADC November 2019 Election Endorsements

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CADC 61st Annual Banquet on 9/20/2019, 5:30pm at Paramount Superstar

Dear CADC Community,

You are cordially invited to attend CADC’s 61st Annual Banquet on Friday, September 20th, 2019, at the Paramount Superstar (939 Clement Street,  94118).  Reception starts at 5:30pm, dinner and program at 7pm.

This is the 61st year that CADC celebrates its mission to empower the Chinese American community and its goal of uplifting the families and young people in San Francisco.  We hope to see you there!

Click here to secure your Early Bird tickets now. 10% Discount before 9/2/2019

Early Bird: 10% discount before 9/2/2019

 Fiery Dragon: $300/person or $2,950/table
    - Full-page ad on brochure
    - Front row seats
    - Public recognition for table purchase 
    - 2 minutes speech

Golden Dragon:  $200/person or $1,950/table
    - Half-page ad on brochure
    - Premium seating
    - Public recognition for table purchase 

Silver Dragon:  $100/person or $950/table
    - Quarter-page ad on brochure
    - Public recognition for table purchase 

Subsidies available!

Click here to secure your Early Bird tickets now. 

Subsidies available - simply contact us (by emailing to info@sfcadc.org) to be seated at one of the board members table and pay what you can. We appreciate your presence!

We encourage all board members to purchase a sponsorship table and help take in folks who may not be able to afford the full prices. 

If you can't attend but would like to donate or help subsidize others on tickets, please click here.

Since 1958, CADC’s mission has been to “Foster active participation in the democratic process of government; to encourage Chinese American candidates to run for elective office; to encourage the appointment of Chinese American to appointive positions; to demand a high standard in government to seek justice and equality for all people; and to study, develop, and advocate for issues relevant to the empowerment and civil rights of Chinese Americans” in San Francisco, the Bay Area, California, and the Country.

Click here to secure your Early Bird tickets now. 10% Discount before 9/2/2019

The dinner will be held on Friday, September 20th, 2019, at 939 Clement Street, Paramount Superstar Restaurant in the Richmond District.  Reception starts at 5:30pm. Dinner and Program at 7pm.

Speakers and Theme to be announced later.

Thank you for your support!
Sincerely,
Chinese American Democratic Club 

 

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Justice and Healing for Grandma Huang

CADC had the pleasure to sit with the family of Yik Oi Huang at the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association celebration for Norman Yee, President of the Board of Supervisors.

For those that are not aware, 88-year-old Yik Oi Huang, was brutally attacked in Visitation Valley as she went out for her daily exercises. Ms. Huang is in critical, but stable condition.
Ms. Huang’s granddaughters, Sasanna and Diana Yee, reported they are seeing incremental improvements in their grandmother’s health, but life support systems are still required to help her breath.

We are asking CADC members and friends to provide assistance and donate to the GoFundMe website. Donations will be used to help alleviate medical expenses. Link listed below:

https://www.gofundme.com/f/justice-and-healing-for-grandma-huang?fbclid=IwAR3H6zURH5X7wypAXPLPlzYXblyMe5fqZKHrKfE7gDZdp3yxMuezBo9CSMs

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