Issues‎ > ‎

Human Rights

Believe it or not, I have a long history of fighting against human right abuses at home and abroad. While a student at Stanford, one day I saw an advertisement on an event that tried to persuade American companies to do business in Vietnam. I came to the event and I stood up and asked the speaker from the Vietnamese Embassy whether or not human rights should be a required condition for trade. He stumbled quite badly with that question. Then I expressed my concerns regarding human right abuses in Vietnam to the attendees and I explained why American businesses should put human rights as a condition. A couple of years later, I did it again at a conference in San Francisco that was organized by the Vietnamese Consulate. I went in there and passed around handouts that detailed serious human right violations in Vietnam to the attendees. The organizers of the event were completely caught off guarded.

While living in Paris, France, I regularly went to demonstrations with my uncle at a plaza with the name “esplanade des droits de l’homme (“esplanade of human rights” — It’s the place where the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948) near the Eiffel Tower to protest against human right violations in Vietnam, China, and Burma. I was interviewed by a reporter from Radio Free Asia who asked me why I was demonstrating and where I was coming from. I told her proudly that I came from San Jose, California, USA and I was demonstrating with other communities to show my solidarity with them against human right abuses in their countries.

In each of the situations, I went there because I felt it was the right and moral thing to do. It’s part of my existential experience having suffered in a Communist prison so I understood the meaning of human dignity really well and the need to speak out for the people being oppressed by their governments.

Personally I am very skeptical of Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren’s human rights record. Sure, she speaks out once in awhile regarding the deplorable state of human rights violations in Vietnam. Well, she does it because of the pressure from the Vietnamese-American community in San Jose. But she was silent when American corporations were cooperating with foreign governments to trample on human rights. A couple of years ago, the New York Times highlighted this problem when Microsoft partnered with the KGB to seriously violate human rights in Russia.

And before that Yahoo gave out the email addresses of Chinese dissidents who were prosecuted by the Communist governments.

In each case, did we hear Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren express her concern? Nope, she was conspicuously silent. If she is a huge supporter of human rights issues then we would expect her to behave very differently in each of these cases.     I guess she didn’t want to express concern about human right violations from her political contributors. This tells us how much she is genuinely concerned about human right issues.      She cares more about political contributions than human dignity. It was the late Congressman Tom Lantos, a Holocaust survivor, who spoke out against Yahoo.

““While technologically and financially you are giants, morally you are pygmies,” Tom Lantos, Democrat of California and chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said angrily after hearing from the two executives”

I would do the same as Congressman Tom Lantos had done if elected to Congress. As someone who have spent time in a Communist prison, I truly believe that it is the right and moral thing to do.

So do you want someone who is genuinely concerned about human rights and who is not afraid to speak out against human right abuses in Congress or do you want to keep electing a career politician like Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren who just pretends that she “cares” about human rights?


I am not the only one who believes Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren is terrible. These are the voices from Americans across the nation who expressed their views about her on the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Hill, San Jose Mercury News, etc. in the comment sections of the articles that mentioned her name

Party: Independent
Reply #12
Apr. 19, 2011 – 8:59 AM EST
Zoe Lofgren is the Congresswoman from Intel – not San Jose. Intel bribes her to get what they want – not what is good for Silicon Valley or this country.

Back to the H1-B problem, there is no way to track these slaves, once they are in the country. The companies who hire them are the ones required to tell the government where these people are, so they have an incentive to lie to the government. And the government created the world’s biggest loophole when it failed to implement any mechanism to stop importing slaves when the limit is hit.

The corrupt Labor Dept. then sets the minimum rate for these slaves which is 20% lower than the market rate which drags down the wage rate for everyone in the industry, and this has been going on for 12 years.

Read more:

14 September 2008
Just Who is Zoe Lofgren?
[Randall Burns] @ 9:50 pm [Email author] [Email this article] [Print this article]
Rob Sanchez recently blogged here on Lou Dobb’s latest report on guest worker visas–and the key role Zoe Lofgren is playing in attempts to expand guest worker visa availability.

What is telling is just who is funding Zoe Lofgren’s campaign. Her top 5 contributors are:

Cisco Systems $11,000
Microsoft Corp $ 8,000
National Venture Capital Assn $ 8,000
Sun Microsystems $ 8,000
Seagate Technology $ 7,900

Now, where I suspect the real conflict of interest comes in through her husband’s corporate law firm.