Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Next stop--University of Oregon

This Saturday, March 1, we'll be trekking to Eugene, OR to perform at the University of Oregon. The show starts at 6:30pm in Gerlinger Lounge.

Sponsored by the Asian/Pacific American Student Union.

When we catch a breath we'll try to blog!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Indiana University, 2/25

Hey all--sorry for the late notice but we'll be at Indiana University in Bloomington this coming Monday. We are the feature for a show called "Worlds Collide: Spirit, Soul, & Body," sponsored by the African American Arts Institute. Many thanks to Joii Byrd, Darlene McDermott, and Rebekah Moore for all their help and hard work in making this show possible.

The show starts at 6:00 pm and will held in the Ruth N. Halls Theater Lobby and Grand Hall.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Mike Cho Killed by Police--Seek Justice for Mike Cho

From Sheena Chou-

Hello Everyone,

My friend, Michael S. Cho was shot and killed on December 31, 2007 at around 2:00 PM by two La Habra, CA police officers. The police officers said that they were responding to a vandalism call but showed up with guns drawn. A surveillance video shows Michael walking slowly towards the police officers and slowly walking away. He was shot after he had walked away. The two La Habra police officers shot Michael over 10 times. The La Habra police chief, Dennis Kies, said that Michael had a tire iron and that the police officers shot at Michael because he had made a "motion to attack" the officers.

You can read about the incident here:,1,3926250.story

and watch the surveillance video here:

I do not know if or why Michael had a tire iron. Unfortunately, the only person who can answer that is no longer with us. I do know, however, what kind of person Michael was. He attended church regularly. He was the kind of friend you knew you could always depend on, someone who always had other people's best interests at heart. His soul was kind and he was always good-natured. I also know that he was born with a leg disability that caused him to walk with a limp. I know that if I (at 5'2" on a good day) wanted to get away from Michael, all I would have to do is walk fast. The La Habra police department is saying that Michael was shot because he made a "motion to attack," but how can he attack if he can't run or walk properly? Why did the cops show up to a vandalism call with guns drawn? Was it necessary to shoot to kill? Why was it necessary to shoot at all when there are Tasers, bean bags and pepper spray?

I cannot fully express how I feel about all this. I am deeply saddened to say the least. I still cannot believe that Mike, a beautiful person who taught blind and disabled children art and art history and who is always the first person to buy a homeless man a meal, has been taken away from us. I will not pretend to know and understand all the legalities with force used by police officers, but it has felt wrong, excessive, unwarranted to me since I first heard about the shooting. I attended a community seminar put on by Korean Community Lawyers Association where former Commander Paul Kim, who was on the board that reviews LAPD's use of force, analyzed the cops' actions and confirmed my suspicions. Though he is now retired, he has reviewed thousands of these cases and is very experienced and familiar with police use of force laws and regulations.

Please help my friend, Michael Cho, not become just another statistic by forwarding this email to your friends, signing the petition and showing up to the vigil(s). I know I'm asking a lot but this is such an important matter. It's not just a Korean American or Asian American issue; it is a Human issue.

How You Can Help:

Sign the petition asking the Dept. of Justice for a federal investigation.

Attend the La Habra vigil held in front of and at the same time as the next La Habra city council meeting.
Tuesday, February 19th, 5:30 PM
201 E. La Habra Blvd. (cross street S. Euclid St.)
La Habra, CA 90631

There will also be a UCLA campus vigil.
Thursday, February 28th, 7-10 PM
UCLA Bruin Plaza
308 Westwood Plz.
Los Angeles, CA 90024

We need as many people as possible to show up to the vigils (especially the La Habra one) because we need to make the La Habra City Council aware that the community is concerned by the questionable circumstances under which Michael was killed and that the community is seeking answers through the means of a speedy and bias-free federal investigation.

If you would like to be added to the mailing list to receive updates on Michael Cho's shooting, please join here.

Contact email address:
One more thing! If you know any media people, please send them our way.

Thank you for reading,
Sheena Chou