Dear Asian Youth: An Intersectional Club Seeking To Empower Asian Youth in Politics

Annika Tamte, Editor-in-Chief

In April 2020, a group of Asian youth, wanting to increase the representation and inclusion of young Asian narratives in politics, came together to create the national organization of Dear Asian Youth (DAY).

Its main mission is to “promote intersectional activism, solidarity with other marginalized communities, and equality and equity. Through our digital platform, grassroots organizing, and community-based advocacy, we strive to showcase diversity in the Asian community as well as accurate and holistic representation.”

Using art, literature, and research, DAY empowers these voices. Since May 2020, DAY has created 111 chapters in nine different countries, has 82,500 followers on Instagram and has reached 3.1 million accounts through social media.

This fall, Mya Sato, ‘21, who is the Social Media Director at the national organization, wished to spread this message and awareness and decided to create a branch of DAY right here at Minnetonka High School.

Because MHS is a predominantly white institution (PWI), Sato wanted to, “embody a space of free expression, acceptance, and support through diversity and inclusion” in order “to talk about things not discussed in the classroom” and “engage Asian youth at our school politically and with social justice issues.”

So far at Minnetonka High School, DAY has created a document listing black businesses to support locally and has spoken about many different issues, such as the effort to stop line 3, colorism, voter mobilization, racism in the LGBTQ+ community and the model minority myth.

Despite the causes in which they are already involved, however, DAY is just getting started.

When asked about her goals for the club in the future, Sato said, “there is so much we can do with advocacy.”

While this club and organization is called Dear Asian Youth, anybody is welcome to join.

Sato said, “it is not about gatekeeping, but more to raise awareness, especially regarding Asian youth” and that DAY “tries to be as intersectional as possible.”

Additionally, Sato remarked that Asian Student Union and DAY have been confused with one another in the past, but there are key distinctions. Both are based on “unity, healing, and empowerment,” but DAY is specifically about political mobilization and “combining those qualities with other POC groups.”

Sato finally said that, “If we are not the ones to tell [a young Asian perspective in political issues], then who is? The message is really that you have a voice, it’s time to use it, join Dear Asian Youth, and we can find a way for you to be heard.”

Dear Asian Youth usually meets virtually on Mondays at 2:45-3:45. Currently, the primary method of communication is through GroupMe. If you are interested in joining, you can DM the @daytonka20 Instagram page to be added to the GroupMe or text Mya Sato at 347-264-3811 if you would like to know more about the club and have further discussion.