NOVEMBER 2002

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Do It For Your Kids
From SeGye
Oct 1, 2002

By Hong, YongKi

Shin GeunHo, the president of Korean-American Association of Mid-Queens, was in trouble when his spending on printing was publicized to be excessive. "I feel sorry for causing so much controversy within our community," he argued, " however, in time, people will understand."

Mr. Shin has been playing an important role in the Korean American voter movement across New York and New Jersey, and has influenced many Korean political groups either directly or indirectly. After he was elected president of the Korean-American Association of Mid-Queens, he followed the lead of the earlier presidents of the association by emphasizing voter registration. "Many people argue that it is time for us to join the mainstream in the United States, and in order to do so, we first need to participate in local politics," he said.

He sponsors many local voting centers and other election campaigns for youth groups, saying that he is "impressed by the rapid spread of voter registration movements among Korean immigrants. Many more Korean groups should participate to have stronger voice in the local community."

Mr. Shin paid $2,000 for the printed materials to promote a joint voter campaign of Korean associations in New York.

He pointed out, "The first immigrant generation should hand over a fundamental achievement to the second generation, which can improve the other ethnic groups’ impression of Korean people so that our children can join the mainstream." He added, "The first generations themselves also have to try to be politically active by participating in local politics, voting and practicing civil rights. One small effort of our generation can make a great difference for our offspring."

Translated from Korean by JooYeon Lee


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