The movement continues. The New York City Asian American Student Conference recognizes the decades-old struggle toward liberation. However, the A/P/A community has also maintained periods of complicity and compliance in the face of injustice. We, as part of this community, must acknowledge our role in reproducing whiteness as well as other sites of oppression. As new voices emerge from students and communities mobilizing in response to continuing systemic violence, we continue to call on the A/P/A community to do the same.
Past conferences worked to create a space where the A/P/A community came together to listen to each other, to engage in necessary dialogue, devise strategies of action, and to help each other heal. Last year, we put forth a call for action and for justice in our communities. This year’s tenth anniversary conference, “Checkpoints: Communicating Consciousness” continues the tradition of holding dialogue on issues facing Asian/Pacific/Americans. We aim to celebrate our histories of resistance, identities, and cultures, and in our reflections, we come across periods of action and inaction as well as checkpoints—points of demarcation. These functional borders operate as tangible barriers and systemic restrictions.
The New York City Asian American Conference has not only grown to reflect the diverse voices of Asian/Pacific/Americans but also addresses the various issues that marginalized communities face. By providing a collaborative, educational space to negotiate ideas of intersectionality, community consciousness, and allyship, we aim to interrogate and dismantle our discomforts and our patterns of behavior. We hope to navigate checkpoints in obstructions to opportunity along lines of identity, politics, and countless others. As individuals and as a conference, we use checkpoints to develop new consciousness in our shared commitment to liberation, the community, and to each other.