The hashtag #AAPISheRose was trending on Twitter on Wednesday, as Asian-Americans shared stories of their family members and prominent women who have paved the way for what they see as a historic moment: Senator Kamala Harris, a Black and Indian-American vice-presidential candidate, taking the debate stage.
The hashtag was started by a group of prominent Asian-Americans that included Jeff Yang, a writer and journalist; Curtis Chin, a filmmaker; and Hannah Kim, the former chief of staff for Representative Charles B. Rangel, as a way to encourage the community to share personal stories and honor the strong female role models in their own lives.
As they discussed ways to celebrate Ms. Harris’s groundbreaking status as the first woman of color on a major party’s presidential ticket, Mr. Yang said, “the conversation turned to the idea of resilience, of standing up in the face of crisis, which so many of the AAPI women in our lives, from moms to mentors to pioneering icons, have done. They rose to the moment, rose to the occasion — and they raised us!”
“This is my mom, Bailing,” Mr. Yang wrote on Twitter. “She was the first of 12 siblings of a single mom to go to college in the US. On the day our first AAPI VP candidate @KamalaHarris takes the stage, I honor her and celebrate all the badass AAPI women who made us possible.”
“I’d like to honor 2 AAPI women who paved the way for so many,” the actor Daniel Dae Kim wrote on Twitter. “@TisaChang & #JadinWong, I will always remember the support you gave this young struggling actor.”
Sujata Day, an actress and director who shared her mother’s story, said that when she heard about the hashtag, it resonated immediately.
“My mom cried the day that she was chosen,” Ms. Day said in an interview about Ms. Harris’s selection. “For me, honestly, it’s always been my mom — she’s been such a cheerleader of me and everything that I do.”
The hashtag held special relevance, Ms. Day said, because Asian-Americans are typically taught to keep their successes hidden and to stay humble.
“I know that these amazing women don’t usually use their own voices to talk about all the amazing things that they’ve done,” Ms. Day said. “So it’s important for our generation to, you know, toot their horns.”
“This is my grandmother who dressed up like a boy to hitch a ride to town to go to school, and a lifelong advocate for teacher’s rights,” Alice Wu, a director and screenwriter, wrote in her tribute. “I honor her today as our first aapi candidate for VP @KamalaHarris takes the debate stage. You got this, Kamala. We got your back.”