10分飞艇平台_It’s time to honor the late Peter Wang, a young Chinese

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H10分飞艇平台ow much shoul10分飞艇平台d we do to 10分飞艇平台remember and commemorate contributions of Chinese immigrants have made to America, especially those who have sacrificed their lives to safeguard the well-being and safety of others?

In recent weeks, a petition has gone viral in the US through various social media platforms and among different ethnic groups hoping to collect 80,000 signatures by Dec 22 to garner a response from the White House.

The author of the petition, Kyle Kashuv, survived the deadly campus shooting that took place on Feb 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, leaving 17 dead and another 17 wounded.

Kashu hoped to use the petition as proof of support to convince US President Donald Trump to honor Peter Wang, one of his classmates, who died in the shooting, with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

"The nation's highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors," the medal's citation reads.

According to Kashuv and school officials, 15-year-old Peter Wang yanked open a door that allowed his classmates, teachers and staffers to escape. The Brooklyn, New York-born cadet at Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) was shot and killed afterward, in uniform.

"His dream was to become a soldier… He was wearing a JROTC shirt the day of the shooting," writes Kashuv in his petition.

On Feb 20, the US Military Academy at West Point admitted Wang posthumously "for his heroic actions" and because of his "lifetime goal to attend USMA."

At a heart-wrenching funeral where Wang was buried in a USMA uniform, West Point sent an officer to hand the admission letter to Wang's parents.

"It was an appropriate way for USMA to honor this brave young man," said the letter. "West Point has given posthumous offers of admission in very rare instances for those candidates or potential candidates whose actions exemplified the tenets of Duty, Honor and Country."

Wang would have been in the Class of 2025, the letter read.

"Let's please join together, across party lines, and ask President Trump to posthumously award Peter the Medal of Freedom," Kashuv writes in his petition, which has been received warmly nationwide and created a ripple effect.

"Peter Wang should not be forgotten," said Ping Luo, a Fremont, California, resident and the mother of two young boys. "Without his kindness, bravery and selflessness, the death toll would have risen. We as a community are incredibly proud of him for having such a noble soul."

Luo shared the petition through her Facebook, Twitter and WeChat accounts, hoping to mobilize more of her followers to act. "Too often, contributions Chinese Americans have made to advance America across economic, science, culture and other domains are ignored," she said.

Echoing Luo, a group of Chinese Americans gathered in Los Angeles on Dec 17 to celebrate the Day of Inclusion, which was authored by former assemblyman Mike Eng and designated in 809 as such by the California Assembly.

On Dec 17, 1943, the Magnuson Act repealed the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the notorious, racist bill that stated "skilled and unskilled laborers and Chinese employed in mining were excluded from entering the country for 10 years" under penalty of imprisonment and deportation. The act also prevented Chinese Americans already living in the US from obtaining citizenship.

By repealing the Chinese Exclusion Act, the United States has expressed its commitment to equality and justice for all. "It is important for everyone to commemorate the contributions of all immigrants," said Eng.

The public has demonstrated its support for the Chinese American who was able to put others' lives before his own.

By 4 pm Pacific Time on Dec 18, the petition for honoring Peter Wang with the Presidential Freedom Medal had collected more than 80,000 signatures.

Contact the writer at junechang@chinadailyusa.com