THE SAN DIEGO PARTICIPANT OBSERVER Participant Observation is the Process of Learning by Observing and Participating in Cultural Life
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October, 2020 - (Click Here for Previous Issues)

(View Social Justice Resources by Category)

Hello San Diego!

Welcome to the October Issue of the San Diego Participant Observer!

BOOK CLUB RECAP: For the past several years the Worldview Project Book Club has been a participant in the One Book - One San Diego partnership between KPBS and over 80 public libraries, service organizations and educational institutions. Every year our book club, under the extraordinary leadership of the club's leader, Sharon Payne, holds a special event to honor and discuss the selected book.

This year we were honored to partner with the San Diego Diplomacy Council, an organization we have co-organized literary events several times in the past. This year, the OBOS selection was They Called Us Enemy by George Takei.

Mr. Takei was only scheduled to spend 15 minutes answering our questions, but he remained on the Zoom session for over an hour! He talked about his family's personal experiences during WWII when they and 120,000 other Japanese Americans living on the West Coast were incarcerated for the length of the war in concentration camps. The overwhelming number were US citizens (60%), and this mass incarceration was done without any sort of due-process or rational cause.

In 1988, President Ronald Reagan signed the Civil Liberties Act of 1988, which included a full apology stating that Japanese American Citizens had suffered "a grave injustice" and that decisions made by the government had been based on "race prejudice, war hysteria, and a failure of political leadership". The act also ordered reparations to the individuals who had been unjustly incarcerated.

Takei also discussed the distressing racial enmity being witnessed in America today. Mr. Takei's discussion of this history was poignant, reflective and extremely fair-minded; he avoided demonizing anyone but instead focused on the tremendous importance of safeguarding democratic ideals, fighting against injustice and prejudice, and the extreme importance of due process even during the most difficult of times.

City College professor, Susan Hasegawa rounded out the evening’s discussion by explaining how this mass incarceration affected Japanese Americans that lived here in San Diego and the long-term effects on housing, property and business ownership and employment. It was a remarkable evening. Over 100 people attended the Zoom event, and we thank all of you for attending!


Around Town and Live in the Virtual World

Friday, October 9

From Friday to Sunday, The San Diego Italian Film Festival with screen the film Bangla, a witty Italian cross-cultural rom-com set in Rome’s multiethnic Torpignattara neighborhood. Sunday at 11:00 AM there will be a live online Q&A with the movie's screenwriter Vanessa Picciarelli.

12:00 PM - The History of Chicano Park will be the topic of a discussion with Martin D. Rosen of the San Diego Archaeology Center. Learn about the history of the fabulous murals in the park and what role they played in the California Chicano civil rights movement.

6:00 PM - Culture in the Age of Covid Presentation will be a walk-through of steps Kristian has done to continue and pivot his cultural work.

6:00 PM - Journey webinar from the AJA Project. Journey participants use their photography skills to address themes such as identity, resettlement, migration, home, culture, community, advocacy and "artivism".

Saturday, October 10

4:30 PM - Trio Gadjo and Besos de Coco perform Saturdays at Bird Park. Social distancing and masks are an absolute must! Bring your own dance partner and instruments.

7:15 PM - Get Out to Vote Concert with Sharon Katz and The Peace Train! The concert will be streamed live from a studio in TJ. Sharon says it's perfectly fine to sing along at home!

Sunday, October 11

6:00 PM - Mehregan Fall Fete - Join the Persian Cultural Center of San Diego and the San Diego Museum of Art to celebrate Mehregan (Persian Autumn Festival) with a free concert by the Damsaz Ensemble.

Wednesday, October 14

7:00 PM - Kristina Wong for Public Office: Live from Her Home. Performance artist, comedian, and elected representative Wong brings her raucous campaign rally online to arouse civic engagement.

Thursday, October 15

ALL DAY The Re-Imagined 2020 San Diego International Film Festival begins and will continue through to October 18.

4:00 PM - The San Diego Children's Discovery Museum will host an online Japanese Roots Event celebrating the culture of Japan

5:00 PM - The Japanese Friendship Garden presents Japanese Tea with Takahiro Okabe is a virtual workshop on the art of making Japanese ceremonial tea and all the cultural aspects.

7:00 PM - Bill Caballero's Homey Jammmm outdoor jam session at Chula Vista Golf Course. Repeats every Thursday

Saturday, October 17

10:00 AM - Join the Chinese Historical Museum and the SDSU Chinese Cultural Center for the webinar Ripples in Time: The Courage and Resilience of Early Chinese Pioneers with guest speaker Russel Low.

Friday, October 23

ALL DAY - The 21st Annual San Diego Asian Film Festival begins and continues until the end of the month.

ALL DAY - The 3-day Joyce Forum Jewish Short Film Festival gets underway and will feature 31 short films by Jewish filmmakers or about Jewish experience around the world.

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