Chinese Americans seeks higher political profile

Chinese Americans deserve a bigger role in America’s politics and have their voice heard from local community to upper echelons of power.

The population of Chinese Americans has climbed to over 4 million, dominating the Asian American population, which accounts for about 4.8 percent of the total American population. But the reality is that less than half of the Chinese immigrants take part in the presidential election and voting for representatives of different levels.

Chinese immigrants have achieved great success in America relying on their talent and hard work, but their political involvement is a far cry from that of the Jewish and Indian people.

Lily Qi, special projects manager at the Office of the Montgomery County, Maryland said Chinese Americans lack political awareness and are not willing to participate in governmental affairs.

“There are 50,000 Chinese Americans in Montgomery County but our voice is so weak. Most people rest on what they have achieved and turn a deaf ear to local affairs. It takes a long time to change their myopic way of thinking,” said Qi who has been striving to encourage local residents to reach out and express their voices.

“One of the efforts is to find a leader so that residents can be organized. I believe that all politics are local. If we can join hands, we can impact the result of an election,” said the democrat who has already cast her vote for President Barack Obama.

Xue Haipei, chairman of the National Council of Chinese Americans, echoed Qi’s sentiment.

“It is imperative that we encourage our children to assert themselves and shape their political awareness,” said Xue who has published an open letter calling on all Chinese Americans to exercise their sacred right on November 6.

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