Helen Kim, President of Next Generation Advocates
As we commemorate the 101st anniversary of the March 1st Independence Movement (삼일절), let us also remember that we as the descendants of the first generation Korean Americans, have the duty to preserve our roots and keep heritage alive to continue the legacy for our future generations.
Korean Americans have played a vital and crucial role in supporting the Korean Independence Movement of the 1900’s — this involvement also had a significant impact in shaping our 117 years of history as immigrants living in the United States. The selfless revolutionary patriotism shown by our immigrant forefathers was not only historical, but was also a major component that helped set our roots in this country and became the backbone that will carry our future generation.
Preservation of our Korean language, and continual teachings of our Independence Movement is imminent, for without the Independence from the Japanese colonial rule, we will not be here today as a free person. The long struggle to survive and the strength to endure are characteristics that are embedded in our roots and must be praised and lifted to our next generation, for they will be the ones to continue our legacy of survival after we are long gone.
Korean Americans have a special advantage, for we share the history and cultures of two of the most powerful countries in the world today. With this in mind, let us continue to build upon Korean roots by instilling the values of the martyrs of the Korea Independence (독립운동) along with the hard work ethics and survival skills of that of the Korean American immigrant pioneers.
Our future generations shall continue to thrive and build upon our legacy, so long as we continue to teach and pass on down our history. Today, we celebrate our Independence fought for by our Korean forefathers and our Freedom to live earned by our immigrant parents. May God bless our future generations.
June 20, 2020