Johnny C is a self-described Accidental Asian American: born in California and raised in Hong Kong and Manila, he spends his days traveling as a freelancer for various NGOs in development and human rights. An idealist and adventurer, his travels are both for work and fun, while sharing stories through his pictures, videos, and writing. When he's not dance-walking to indie rock songs on his iPod in cities around the world, he's usually got himself engrossed in a science fiction novel traversing the portals of reality.
Last year, 2.06 million foreigners visited Cambodia’s Angkor Wat, the global Mecca of backpackers, with the cost of entry at $20 USD per day and $60 for one week, which turned the ancient Khmer temple remains into an El Dorado. In the same year, thousands of Cambodians still live with the legacy of Pol Pot, landmines, abject poverty, Prime Minister Hun Sen, the perpetual “shit on a stick” flavor of corrupt Third World leader that [...] Continue »
[In 2009, the decades-long civil war in Sri Lanka between the terrorist LTTE or Tamil Tigers and Sri Lankan Government finally ended, but left behind a legacy of war that endures, further complicated by global climate change. In 2012, Johnny C traveled there to cover the forces of war, globalization, and climate change. Some names and organizations have been changed to protect the identities of those who participated in the events of this series.] In [...] Continue »
“We should be worried about online silos [news, information, opinion, and discussion communities that are dominated by a single point of view]. They make us stupid and hostile toward each other.” Larry Sanger, co-founder of Wikipedia and Citizendium Six years of living in Los Angeles reinforced several conclusions in my head: 1) if New Jersey is called “the armpit of the union” then Los Angeles is by far the asshole of the union; 2) my [...] Continue »
The Economist article asking, “Do Asian Americans still exist?” is likely to rouse some sentiments. As usual, Asian America, with all its ethnicities, don’t just indicate a diversity of cultural groups under the large label of “Asian” but a striking variety of opinions and attitudes towards just what “Asian America” is exactly. For that very reason, it’s one of the fragile threads that manages to still keep people bound together, but tends to often confuse [...] Continue »
Hey Sandy, you’re looking happily deranged (have you picked your target yet?) Watch out, because we’ve got an ensemble of artists, including Jason Chen, Clara C, David Choi, Inch Chua, Abraham Lim, Heart Hays, Haviland Stillwell, and Deborah S. Craig, all led by George Shaw and the Irvine Young Concert Artists, who have joined together to record a Christmas album to benefit victims of Hurricane Sandy. Select members of IYCA will also do a benefit [...] Continue »
“Why are those stupid Americans always so petty about issues like race?” asks my Belgian colleague. I shrug my shoulders, because after ten years in America, I still don’t have that view that political correctness directly leads to equality–it’s a stifling world tool, if anything, in my experience. Over drinks at one of Bangkok’s many pubs, I and an eclectic mix of locals, expat workers, backpackers, and documentary filmmakers in exile talked about movies that [...] Continue »
“The Philippines right now is how America will be in twenty years”, says Li, a Manila resident situated in one of many Bonifacio High Street’s various cafes, in reference to two government acts under Noynoy Aquino’s leadership. The laws in question are The Reproductive Health Bill, and the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, both the subject of intense debate that highlight the political processes, pluralism, corruption, and bureaucracy that generate a problem in the form [...] Continue »
Obama’s re-election is already old news and the calls of secession are becoming yesterday’s cocktail stories, but the big issue is that his first order of duty is his international tour to Southeast Asia to meet with ASEAN leaders on 18 November, and his historic visit to Burma (Myanmar). What does this mean, exactly? It means we should be pretty excited that this is another piece of evidence that this is the Pacific Century–especially with [...] Continue »
Last week in the Bangkok Post, an article revealed a painful scenario which has 30-40 patients each month checking into hospitals in Bangkok: penis injections, with the intent of improving their anatomy. What’s interesting though, is that they are injecting themselves with olive oil to make their penises bigger.
Since the sixth of November is 2012′s election year, Mother Jones recently put out an article on the timeline of voter suppression in America. What’s interesting about the piece is that many individuals from Asian American history are right there on the timeline. Here’s a few snippets snagged from them with a few comments from us, and an extra tidbit we added as well. Can you throw in some of your own highlights from Asian [...] Continue »
So the other week, Lucy Liu was under fire for her comment on David Letterman’s show about how she looks “a little Filipino” when she tans. Although Lucy has already apologized, a number of people are unsurprisingly still offended by the comment. The funny thing is, it’s not so much of an issue of ignorance as it is about cultural exposure. In the northern Philippines and parts of the south, there are light-skinned people who [...] Continue »
“The king is dead. Long live the king” goes the old proclamation. Cambodia’s former king Norodom Sihanouk was reported to have died on 15 October 2012, which to the Kingdom of Cambodia symbolizes more than just the loss of their old monarch, but–love him or hate him–the end of an era. Sihanouk was the man who led Cambodia to independence from France without bloodshed, was a prominent political figure as both prime minister and foreign [...] Continue »