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Published Articles

2016
What a Pew poll says about our views on undocumented immigrants • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on December 28, 2016
A Pew Research Center national poll, conducted in August 2016 among 2,010 adults, revealed that 76 percent of Americans believe undocumented immigrants are "as hard-working and honest as U.S. citizens,"...


A Fake White World • India Currents • Published on December 17, 2016
On November 9th, I was overwhelmed with despair, and I know I was not alone. Social media reflected the weight of our collective grief....


The cost of Deferred Action and cost of ending Deferred Action • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on December 14, 2016
Diana Wong, a 27-year-old San Francisco resident, came to America with her family when she was 5 years old and has lived here ever since. Wong's parents were originally from...


Modeled on Japanese internment, Muslim registry opens old wounds • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on November 30, 2016
Recently, I read Bay Area-born writer Julie Otsuko's exquisitely framed novel, "The Buddha in the Attic," about Japanese "picture brides," in a single sitting. (It's all of 144 pages.)...


Stories of Refugees, Part IV: Out of Syria • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on November 16, 2016
Mohanad Hussein, his young wife, Hadeel, and their toddler Nusreen arrived in San Francisco 22 days before I met them. "She is 18 months and two days," Hadeel said smiling...


Stories of Refugees, Part III: Out of Syria • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on November 2, 2016
‘My mother is a very good cook," 18-year-old Basima said, her smile illuminating her face as she exchanged an affectionate glance with her mother. ...


Stories of Refugees, Part II: Out of Burma • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on October 19, 2016
The Burma-Karen conflict, one of the longest running civil wars in the world, started in 1949, soon after Burma gained independence from the British. The Karen people have been fighting...


Are You One of Those? • India Currents • Published on October 14, 2016
We are republishing the editorial written by Jaya Padmanabhan in March of 2015. This piece won First Prize for editorial writing in the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club's annual awards luncheon held on October 1st, 2016. Congratulations, Jaya! Late one snowy evening, three girls and three boys were ...


Stories of Refugees, Part I: Out of Iraq • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on October 5, 2016
In the next few fortnights, this column will focus on stories of refugees who have resettled in and around San Francisco.


Green card holders: Become citizens and vote • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on September 21, 2016
The Portsmouth Square Club House, near Chinatown, was packed with Chinese immigrants who chanted phrases to memorize for their upcoming citizenship test: How many states are there?


Where's your pen, Gov. Brown? • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on September 7, 2016
On Aug. 22, one of those deceptively cold San Francisco mornings, a group of people gathered outside 630 Sansome St. (the offices of the Department of Homeland Security) to protest...


Written in parenthesis • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on August 24, 2016
Late in July, I watched a disturbing and wrenching play called "The Box" at the Z Space auditorium in the Mission. The play was written by Sarah Shourd...


Leaving family on the other side of the border • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on August 10, 2016
A reader in San Francisco recently commented on how ironic it is that when parents leave their children behind in the care of family members ...


It's Not You, It's Me • Editorial, India Currents • Published on August 2, 2016
"Bullshit is everywhere. There is very little that you will encounter in life that has not been, in some ways, infused with bullshit." Those words formed the opening of Jon Stewart's Daily Show exit monologue. As breakup speeches go, Stewart's was delightfully wry and provocative. In his ...


Why aren't more applying for deportation exemption? • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on July 27, 2016
The Supreme Court's nondecision in June, which effectively blocked President Barack Obama's immigration reform plan, is, as the president put it, "heartbreaking." The plan was designed to keep families together.


America's culture of acceptance and our color crisis • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on July13, 2016
New citizens of the United States of America are sworn in during a ceremony at the San Mateo library in June


Being the Best • Editorial, India Currents • Published on July 2, 2016
I have lately been reading passages from Marcus Aurelius' book The Meditations. I have a third hand copy of this classic written by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus who recorded, judged and analyzed his own motivations over the course of twenty years. It is a self-examination that was most ...


The Audacity of My Secularism • Editorial, India Currents • Published on June 2, 2016
At a dinner recently, the conversation drifted to the politics of religion in India. A friend, who relocated to India about a decade ago, scoffed at the idea of secularism. He called it "appeasement politics," a political creed that has resulted in the marginalization of the majority in India. Furthermore ...


Crime and Punishment: The Eddy Zheng story • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on June 1, 2016
"A good act does not wash out the bad, nor a bad act the good. Each should have its own reward," said George R. R. Martin in his book "A Clash of Kings."


Sanctuary City: Welcome victims of crime • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on May 18, 2016
On KQED's "Forum" program on May 9, hosted by Michael Krasny, San Francisco's sanctuary city ordinance was put on the defensive. Supervisor John Avalos and San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra


An Infinite Series of Beautiful Patterns • Editorial, India Currents • Published on May 5, 2016
Without analytical bearing, poetry is a mere collection of words set to meter. Without recognizing the exquisite skill it takes and the knowledge it exposes, math is a mere tedious process of proofs and calculations.


Why should we care about refugees? • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on May 4, 2016
Common humanity. What a powerful phrase. And how it resonates. The refugee crisis is a problem that requires a collective as well as an individual consciousness.


Undocumented unaccompanied children face deportation court hearings • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on April 20, 2016
What we need to figure out is how best, how expeditiously and how fairly can we repatriate or integrate undocumented unaccompanied children.


Should we be willing to speak more languages? • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on April 6, 2016
Donald Trump recently said we have a country where to assimilate, we speak English. He wasn't wrong, as much as he wasn't right.


Get the Spelling of Gandhi Right, Please! • Editorial, India Currents • Published on April 2, 2016
But, standing there in a dimly lit museum passageway in Berlin, peering at the English massacre of Gandhi's name, it seemed more than a sloppy error.


Border walls cause more human suffering • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on March 23, 2016
Haven't we seen from European history what walls do and how they divide us as people of one world?


Skilled visa holders insecure about life in the US • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on March 9, 2016
You can build your life where you choose to. The question is, and always will be this: Where do you think you belong? Where's home?"


It's the Race Card, People! • Editorial, India Currents • Published on March 1, 2016
When Meryl Streep announced that after all, we're all from Africa, in response to the lack of color in the Oscar nominating panel, she was being completely accurate, but not entirely truthful. When it comes to questions of race, the best strategy often is to quibble, split hairs or...


Fear prevents green card holders from becoming citizens • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on February 24, 2016
The notion of a country inviting immigrants to become citizens is a riveting one. It's the idea of acceptance and inclusion.


Escape from battery • The San Francisco Examiner • Published on February 9, 2016
How often have we heard about our immigration system being broken? President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Ted Cruz and John Boehner have said it recently, and they're not the only ones. It's become a tired part of political speak.


Do You Believe in Ghosts? • Editorial, India Currents • Published on February 1, 2016
Last summer I encountered a ghost. It happened simply, unsuspectingly. Perhaps the stage had already been set. I had been invited to stay for a month at an artists' residency in a French town called Marnay-sur-Seine. The setting was a 17th century priory next door to a 12th century church ...


Yours, Hopefully • Editorial, India Currents • Published on January 6, 2016
Happy 2016! It seems to me that of all things we carry with us towards another year, nothing is more invigorating than the belief that life will be brighter on the other side of the New Year's Eve clock. And as soon as the small hand inches its way ...

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