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Analytical Essay Essay 1 - "and justice for all"?


Due time/date:  23:55, Monday, 26 June 2017

  1. review the Asian American Brief Historical Chronology and the Notes on the Ancheta text; 
  2. choose one historical event that is, in your view, the most serious violation of constitutional rights that should have protected Asian Americans from legal and political harm, but did not;
  3. identify the constitutional right or combination of rights involved,  specifying their source from among the Amendments to the US Constitution, and;
  4. explain how those constitutional rights of the Asian ethnic group or groups were violated.

250 words minimum, 500 words maximum

online text, please: if you prefer to write in a software file – e.g. MS Word, when you are done, highlight and copy the text into the online response box in iLearn and click “submit” if the button is there.

Again, due time/date: on or before  23:55, Monday, 26 June 2017



Asian and Filipino Americans:

Brief Historical Notes

1500s through the 1700s - Filipino mariners reached Mexico and the California coast aboard Spanish galleons built and equipped in the Manila region for global exploration and trade. Present-day Americans of Filipino and Chinese descent in the Louisiana and Gulf Coast area trace their earliest immigrant heritage back to Manila Galleon seafarers.

1587 - "Luzones Indios", natives of the Philippines, were among the expeditionary force set ashore at Morro Bay, California on October 18, 1587. They were crew of the Nuestra Senora de Esperanza under Capt. Pedro de Unamuno.

1763 - "Manilamen", escaped galleon crew, establish the village of St. Malo on Lake Borgne near New Orleans as the earliest known settlement by Filipinos in North America.

1781 - Antonio Miranda, a Filipino member of Spanish expeditionary force exploring California from Mexico, was among the party that established the Pueblo de Nuestra Senora de los Angeles, the City of Los Angeles.

1814 - Filipinos fought under pirate/privateer Jean Lafitte with U.S. forces at the Battle of New Orleans.

1830s - Chinese began working in small numbers on American-owned sugar plantations in Hawaii. Chinese sailors and peddlers were noticed in New York.

1848 - The traditional reference date for the arrival of the first offically recorded Chinese immigrants at the start of the California Gold Rush.

1850 - The Anti-Foreign Miner's License law established a tax that was selectively enforced against Chinese goldminers.

1852 - Chinese were brought to Hawaii in large numbers as field-workers on American- owned sugar plantations.

1854 - People v. Hall: the California Supreme Court decided that Chinese could not testify against any "white man", even if the Chinese were victims or witnesses to serious crimes, i.e., murder, arson or robbery.

1854 -The original International Hotel was built on Jackson Street.

1858 - California passed an anti-Chinese and anti-"Mongolian" immigration law that was a violation of Congressional powers under the U.S. Constitution but was briefly enforced against Asians. ("Mongolian" was a generic reference to Asians commonly used in laws and political discussion through the 19th and early 20th centuries which was then eventually replaced by the use of the term "oriental".)


1865 - The Central Pacific Railroad Co. began recruitment of Chinese laborers, called "coolies" by whites. An estimated 12,000 to 15,000 Chinese laborers built the western half of the Transcontinental Railway, over and through the Sierra and Rocky Mountains, during a four year period.

1867 - Two thousand Chinese railroad workers struck for two weeks in protest against extremely harsh working conditions.

1868 - Japanese were brought over as contract laborers to Hawaii. The U.S. and China signed the Burlingame Treaty which guaranteed mutual free emigration and equal treatment for the people of each signator nation.

1870 - California passed a law to stop importation of Mongolian, Chinese and Japanese, "prostitutes", though many of the women were legitimate wives or relatives of legal U.S. residents. Mongolians were categorically denied naturalization rights as "unassimilable" and "undesirable" immigrants and could never become American citizens.

1871 - A mob of whites hung 15 Chinese, shot 4 others to death and wounded 2 in Los Angeles in mob violence that police connected with an internal Chinese community conflict about a Chinese woman. All of the killers convicted for these crimes were released from prison one year later.

1873 - The International Hotel moved to 848 Kearny Street.

1875 - The Page Law prohibited entrance of Mongolian prostitutes as national policy. Chinese women attempting to enter the U.S. went through complicated and humiliating procedures to gain entry.

1877 - Members of a laborers' union affiliated with the Order of Caucasians, a white supremacist group, burned the businesses of Anglos who employed Chinese then burned four Chinese to death after soaking them with kerosene and setting them ablaze. Two other Chinese victims survived.

1879 – California State Constitution re: “Chinese;” exclusion from state funded projects; rejection of incorporation for businesses employing Chinese.

1882 - The Chinese Exclusion Act banned immigration of Chinese laborers to the U.S. and prohibited Chinese from being naturalized; repealed in 1943.

1882 - 100 Korean students and diplomats entered the U.S. to receive training for Korean independence from Japan.

1885 - The Japanese government officially sanctioned emigration of Japanese to Hawaii as contract laborers.

1885 - 28 unarmed Chinese coalminers were shot to death and 15 more wounded by Anglo-euro coalminers on strike in Rock Springs, Wyoming.

1885 - San Francisco and other bay area cities and towns opened segregated schools for Chinese children.

1886 - In Yick Wo v. Hopkins, The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that ordinances that were enforced in a discriminatory and unequal manner by city governments were unconstitutional under the 14th Amendment equal protection clause: a rare instance of justice for Chinese immigrants.

1888 - The Scott Act prohibited re-entry to the U.S. of Chinese laborers who had left to visit families and homeland.

1894 - The Federal Circuit Court of Massachusetts decided that Japanese immigrants were not eligible for naturalization in In re Saito.

1896 - Shinsei Kaneko, a Japanese immigrant residing in Riverside, California was naturalized. Other Japanese immigrants who became naturalized citizens sometimes had had their status reversed by state government action in federal courts.

1898 - The Spanish-American War ended and the lesser known Philippine-American War began. The U.S. military forces conducted warfare by massacre. American sources cite 250,000 to 600,000 Filipino dead. Philippine sources cite numbers as high as 1,000,000 deaths directly caused by military action. Most of the dead were unarmed civilians, women and children. The U.S. took ownership of the Philippines as a colony by purchase, despite the fact of military conquest, under the Treaty of Paris. Filipinos were declared "wards" of the U.S. and thus needed no travel visas to Hawaii or the continental U.S. Filipino wives of conquering American veterans were allowed to enter the U.S. as war brides.

1902 - The Cooper Act, federal law, prohibited alien "orientals", including Filipinos, from citizenship by naturalization, ownership of real property, operation of incorporated businesses and holding public office.

1903 - Korean laborers arrived in Hawaii to work on sugar plantations.

1903 - The agreement between the Philippines, then governed by an American Commission, and the U.S. allowed Filipino students to come to the U.S. for college and university education, many at the elite public and private institutions. The stated objectives of this program were to develop and westernize the Philippines and to prepare them for eventual independence.

1906 - The Great San Francisco Earthquake destroys the International Hotel which is subsequently rebuilt by its owner, the Milton Meyer Company (real estate and investment).

1906 - California Alien Land Act, aimed at Japanese immigrant farmers, barred "aliens ineligible [by race] to citizenship" from owning land. This and other race-specific state laws were rendered unenforceable or were repealed in 1948.

1906 - The Naturalization Act of l906 restricted availability of citizenship to white, black and, eventually, Filipino immigrants. Chinese were specifically barred from citizenship.


1907--Gentlemen's Agreement between U.S. and Japan limited emigration of Japanese laborers - "picture brides", whose marriages were arranged through personal correspondence with Japanese immigrants already in America, were exempted. The Agreement was supposed to insure equal rights for Japanese in the U.S.

1907 to 1923 - approximately 14,000 Japanese and 950 Korean picture brides entered Hawaii.

1906 - Filipinos began to arrive in Hawaii to work on sugar plantations. Asian Indians begin to arrive in substantial numbers in California after earlier immigration to the Canadian and U.S. Pacific Northwest.

1909 - In re Knight: a federal court decides that a person who was half Asian and half Anglo (British father) was not "white" enough to be granted citizenship.

1910 - California uses administrative measures to slow Asian Indian migration into California.

1917 - A "Barred Zone" is established by the 1917 Immigration Act against all Asian immigrants, including Asian Indians, who were then inaccurately referred to as "Hindus".

1918 - The right to become naturalized citizens was extended to all who enlisted and served in the U.S. military, regardless of race. This included Asians otherwise excluded from citizenship.

1920 - Filipino and Japanese plantation workers went on strike in Hawaii against extremely harsh working conditions low pay and unfair contracts.

1922 - U.S. Supreme Court ruled Japanese ineligible for naturalization in Takao Ozawa v. The United States. The Cable Act provided that women citizens who marry aliens would lose their citizenship.

1923 - Asian Indians were declared ineligible to citizenship in U.S. v. Bhagat Singh Thind.

1924 - The Immigration Quota Act excluded all aliens ineligible for citizenship - all Asians except Hawaiians and Filipinos - and allowed entry of alien wives of Chinese merchants but not alien wives of U.S. citizens. Asian American historians comment that the only purpose served by this exclusion of alien wives was to prohibit the development of a second generation population among Asian Americans.

1924 - Filipinos are recruited to Hawaii and West Coast agroindustry in massive numbers as a result of "oriental exclusion" effective against other Asiatic sources of "cheap labor". "Manilatowns" in urban areas , including Los Angeles and San Francisco grow rapidly into "bachelor communities".


The Kearny Street community of San Francisco increased in size to a strip ten blocks long by the mid-1930s. Many "Pinoys" moved into the South of Market and Fillmore areas of the city.

1928 - Filipinos were forced out of the Yakima Valley in the state of Washington.

1930 - Fermin Tobera is shot dead during anti-Filipino attacks in Pajaro Dunes, near Watsonville, California.

1930 - The federal government allowed entry of alien wives of Chinese American citizens if they were married before May 26, 1924.

1931 - Filipinos who served in the U.S. military became eligible for citizenship. With citizenship came the opportunity for many Filipinos to own real property and engage in business, especially on the East and South Coasts.

1934 - The Tydings-McDuffie Act was passed by Congress to grant independence to the Philippines in 1945 as part of the popular movement to exclude and repatriate Filipinos. An annual quota of 50 Filipino immigrants was established. The U.S. Supreme Court immediately ruled all Filipinos other than military veterans ineligible for citizenship.

1942 - West Coast Japanese Americans subjected to arrest, relocation and internment under Presidential Order 9066 without due process or any other Constitutional rights despite the fact that the majority of them are U.S. citizens.

1943 - The Chinese immigrant exclusion acts were repealed, the racial bar against Chinese alien naturalization was removed and an annual immigration quota of 105 Chinese was established. Asian American historians attribute this liberalization to the wartime alliance between China and the U.S. against Japan.

1945 - The War Brides Act provided a waiver of visa requirements to permit members of the U.S. military to bring in alien-born spouses, including 200,000 Asian brides. This single measure contributed substantially to the conversion of Filipino bachelor society to a family-based community.

1946 - The Federal government placed Chinese wives of American citizens on nonquota basis, thus increasing the number who could enter the U.S.

1946 - The Philippines was declared independent and an annual quota of 100 Filipino immigrants to the U.S. was imposed.

1952 - The McCarran-Walter Act upheld national-origin quotas based on the 1920 U.S. Census but maintained low quotas for Asian and Pacific countries. Aliens previously ineligible for citizenship were allowed to apply for naturalization.

1956 - Dalip Singh Saund of Imperial Valley, California, was elected to Congress. 1956 - The Alien Land Laws of California were repealed.

1959 - Hawaii became the 50th state, with Daniel Inouye and Hiram Fong elected to Congress.

1964 - Patsy Takemoto Mink of Hawaii became the first Asian American woman Congressperson.

1965 - National-origin quotas were abolished during a short-lived era of liberal, very open immigration policy. All nations were allowed an equal annual quota of 20,000 immigrants. The greatest expansion of Asian and Latino immigrant populations began at this time and continued into the new millennium (2000) despite growing anti- immigrant/refugee attitudes and actions from Anglo/euro-Americans based on economic, cultural and racial issues.

1975 - The U.S. retreated from Viet Nam but provided for the resettlement of 130,000 Southeast Asian refugees out of the millions left behind under persecutive governments. During this era of economic recession, a racially-charged anti-immigrant and refugee movement began to gain momentum in the U.S. Much of the focus of the agitation and violence was directed increasingly at people of Asian descent in general, without regard to either their specific ethnicity or citizenship status.

1976 to 1985 - Approximately 762,100 Southeast Asian refugees resettled in the U.S. under programs that initially placed most of them in cultural and social isolation in the midwestern states. 80% of these resettled in other areas with higher Asian American populations, such as the oceanic coasts and the western states, within a few years.

1982 - The U.S. established an annual ceiling of 10,000 for Southeast Asian admissions. Congress passed the Amerasian Immigration Act that gave entry priority to children left behind in Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand by their American fathers.

1982 - Vincent Chin, of Detroit, Michigan, was beaten to death with a baseball bat by two men who blamed Asians for the problems of American workers. The suspects were only convicted of manslaughter and punished by a light fine with no post-trial prison time. Federal convictions for violating Chin’s civil rights were appealed successfully. With a change of venue for a new trial, defendants Ebens and Nitz were exonerated. Massive Asian American community reaction resulted in the formation of a broad-based anti-race crime movement, anti-hate crime legislation, and identification and prevention programs.

1989 - After two years of Congressional argument and approval, President George Bush signed into law redress and reparations to the Japanese American survivors of the World War 2 concentration camps.

1990 - Congressional Democrats succeed in compromising a bill that was originally intended to substantially restrict Asian and Latino immigration. Filipino military veterans of World War II benefited under related legislation allowing them to immigrate to the U.S.


Primary Sources:

Sucheng Chan, Asian Americans: An Interpretive History (Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1991).]

Alex S. Fabros, with Randell Camantigue, Michael Lagui, Annalissa Herbert, Carina Mifuel, et alia; the Filipino American Experience Research Project (FAX- RP) at Asian American Studies, College of Ethnic Studies, San Francisco State University, 1992-1997.

Daniel Phil Gonzales, Asian American Studies 456: Filipinos in America; Filipino American Studies Program, Asian American Studies Department, College of Ethnic Studies, 1978-.

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