An Interview with Joe Bataan: Torrance, California, February 14, 2013


  • Tyrone Nagai



No longer do we have to sit around, passive, and wait for somebody else to do something, [do] we have to play it safe. No, it’s time to set up, you know, ‘I’m Filipino,’ ‘Hey, I’m Korean,’ let’s put it together, ‘Unity Day.’ We can have a day and a parade out there, just like everybody else. And this is what I want to do, and I want to do that before I check out. I’m hoping that you’re going to be involved and other people, because once we document this, and we keep talking about it, something is going to happen, because that’s why Freddie Cordova said, ‘If you sit on history, it dies.’ And, he’s so right. I mean, I never knew that Filipinos settled in Louisiana, back in the 1500s. I never knew that young lady that won an Olympic gold medal for swimming, from San Francisco. You know, all of this history can’t be covered up anymore. It’s got to be put out there in the libraries, just like Theo Gonzalves said, even though he had Joe Bataan, a study of me, there are all the people that need to be on the bookshelves, along with African Americans, and Latinos, and everybody else, and this is what I hope to do.