Filipino, Vietnamese Americans call for boycott of ‘Made in China’ products
WASHINGTON DC – Leaders of the Filipino, Vietnamese and Asian American communities and their allies held a “Prayer Rally for Peace in the Southeast Asian Sea” in front of the Martin L. King Memorial (MLK) at sunset on August 21, 2012 to protest the recent bullying actions against Asian neighbors and the widespread human rights violations by the government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC).
The rallyists at the ceremonies in the nation’s capital were led in prayer by Catholic priest Fr., Andrew Gonzalo and Protestant Pastor Mariano Gabor, both from Maryland. Short speeches were also given by their leaders to announce their boycott of Made in China products.
They honored the martyrdom of Reverend King on April 4, 1968 and of Philippine Senator Benigno S. Aquino Jr. who was assassinated on August 21, 1983 at the Manila airport when he returned from exile to protest the Marcos dictatorship.
The Filipino and Vietnamese American leaders were dressed in yellow, displayed their banners and national flags, prayed and sang songs.
They called for a nationwide campaign to persuade American consumers to boycott “Made in China” products and to choose better alternatives like “Made in USA.”
The Filipino, Vietnamese and Lao leaders plan to protest at future visits of PRC Chinese government officials in Washington until Beijing complies with international laws that protect territorial sovereignty of the Philippines and Vietnam over their seas and that uphold human rights of the Chinese people.
In April 2012, China’s government blocked 100,000 Chinese tourists from visiting the Philippines and embargoed Philippine banana and pineapple imports after the Philippine government protested China’s creeping invasion of the West Philippine Sea around the Philippines’ Scarborough Shoal area.
The US Senate in June 2011 and recently passed resolutions deploring China’s aggression in the Southeast Asian Sea and increased tensions in the area that may lead to military conflict.
In 1955, Rev. King presided over the Montgomery Bus Boycott to protest racial segregation and to seek equal rights in America for black Americans. King gave his historic “I have a Dream” speech on August 28, 1963 during the March on Washington rally.
Sadly, the MLK granite monument materials were mined, designed, and produced in China starting 2007. It caused wide spread controversy and protests from African Americans, artists, human rights activists and labor leaders when the monument opened on August 28, 2011.