Angel Island


I only recently learned about the Chinese Exclusion Act, the racist immigration law effective from 1882 to 1943. Hearing the rhetoric of the time rattled me because so little has changed since then. Angel Island Immigration Station could have been the Ellis Island of the West but instead Chinese immigrants were detained and interrogated for weeks, months, years… They carved poems into the walls out of indignation and despair, words that indict us still today. When will we change?


America has power, but not justice.
In prison, we were victimized as if we were guilty.
Given no opportunity to explain, it was really brutal.
I bow my head in reflection but there is
nothing I can do.