International District: We Are Resilient

Chinese Americans and immigrants have a long history of racism and exclusion in the U.S. As a means to survive, Chinese immigrants created communities throughout the nation. Chinatowns became safe havens for immigrants. For generations, food represents resiliency and is reflected in our Chinatowns to this day.

Seattle's Chinatown/International District has grown and become a neighborhood with more than 400 diverse businesses. Home to Little Saigon and Japantown as well, our community is resilient and strives to honor our ancestors and preserve our culture and legacy.

A few community members wrote this letter to Chinatown/International District.

love letter to the international district

"when i was a child, i used to spend hours at kinokuniya bookstore, reading through the back of mangas to see which plot line intrigued me the most. two decades later, and i can still spend my whole day in chinatown. whether or not that's spending my day on my laptop at eastern cafe, chatting with regulars and grabbing some food at Harbor City, browsing through the snacks in uwajimaya, buying bubble tea at young tea, oasis, or seattle best, meeting friends at hong kong bistro, and ending my night at ganbei. i found comfort to be within my own culture, to be in asian culture, to be in diversity. i long for the days that i can stay in kinokuniya, studying asian graphic designing and studying chinese historical art.

these times in the id, was where i spent a lot of time learning how to be an ally, to those who do not share the same ethnicity to me. the diverse businesses there provided a space for me and my friends to truly flourish and connect with people, to find similarities and differences, to enjoy different cultures together.

to create change in the world, we truly believe in the power of love and kindness. even when the racism and discrimination on asians is real, the pain and fear is real, the love that shines when a community comes together in solidarity through adversity, is always brighter. we hope we can all come together, collectively, we are resilient and we will overcome."

- a group of community members

There are many ways to support the ID. Here are just a few ways:

As a response to hate crimes and White Nationalist stickers being posted around Seattle's Chinatown, the community came together to post this locally made poster throughout the neighborhood. You can download the poster on the artist's website.

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