Brother Of Jerry
Date: February 06, 2019 02:55PM
His name rang a bell from my BYU days, so I did some wikipedia exploring.
First, Gerrit - one "t".
Second, he was named after Gerrit de Jong, a BYU professor whose family Gong's mother lived with for a time when she was a BYU student. The De Jong Concert Hall in HFAC, BYU campus, is named after him.
Third, Gong's mother is ethnic Chinese from Hawaii, and his paternal ancestors came to the US from China in the late 19th century.
There must be an interesting story there, because the Chinese Exclusion Act was passed in 1882, which banned Chinese immigration to America. I've been reading up on both walls and immigration because of some recent threads here on the subjects, and I learned a surprising amount. (That's a diplomatic way of saying I was not aware of the depth of my ignorance on the topics).
The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 did what it sounds like it did. Chinese women had been banned from immigrating a few years earlier. Much to my surprise, the act remained in effect until 1943, when a quota of 105 Chinese immigrants per year was instituted. This was increased in 1952, and the National Origins Formula was abolished in 1965, essentially ending the tight restrictions on ethnic Chinese (and ethnicities in general).
I knew we had laws back in the time period of Jim Crow that would be considered blatantly racist and discriminatory today, but I assumed they must have gone away in the 1920s, or something like that - you know, the Progressive Era and all that. I suppose this is at least partly due to the fact that I grew up in a city that was overwhelmingly immigrants who came to the US during the Ellis Island period (1890s to 1930 or so) so I assumed immigration was pretty liberal in that period. My grandparents came in from eastern Europe during that period. All but one of my high school friends had grandparents, and in a few cases, parents, for whom English was a second language. When I saw the movie "The Green Book" a few weeks ago, I recognized every one of the Italian swear words. :)
Well. Things weren't liberal back then if you were Chinese.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Exclusion_Act
Like I said, if Gong's paternal ancestors came to the US (California) from China in the late 19th century, there has to be a good story there.
BTW, there was a Chinatown in SLC. It was on what is now Regent Street, now a row of restaurants right behind the Eccles Theater and the now defunct Lamb's Grill, on the 100 S block of S Main St in SLC. I imagine it was cleared out about the time Lamb's Grill was founded (1919)
Gong sounds smart and well educated (it is possible to be either without the other). I would hope he would help keep the crazies in the Q15 from doing too much damage. It would be a hoot if he eventually ended up as President, but I won't live to see that (a realization that comes with increasing frequency at my age)