We Should Refer To It As 'Lunar New Year' Rather Than 'Chinese New Year'

We Should Refer To It As 'Lunar New Year' Rather Than 'Chinese New Year'

It's not just about the Chinese.
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Every year as Lunar New Year approaches, I receive a lot of funny questions such as “Is your new year and the Chinese New Year on the same date?” or "What is Lunar New Year? I only know Chinese New Year." But the most ridiculous question I get asked is “Why do the Viets celebrate the Chinese New Year when it’s “Chinese”?” What do you mean? This is exactly like asking why people around the world celebrate Christmas when not everyone believes in Jesus, or telling white people that they can’t have Chinese food because they aren’t Chinese. If we talk about something “Chinese,” I guess China has long dominated in manufacturing. Literally everything is made in China. But that doesn’t mean we can’t use the products just because they're "Chinese." In addition, a lot of Asian culture originates from China.

Let us call it Lunar New Year because it's not only the Chinese who celebrate it. Indeed, the holiday spread throughout Asia and was absorbed in Asian customs for centuries. China was in control of many Asian countries and they were assimilating us. It’s not only the Vietnamese; Koreans, Cambodians, Filipinos, Malaysians, Singaporeans, etc. still have Lunar New Year as the biggest holiday of the year.

Let us call it Lunar New Year, so it’s inclusive and we acknowledge the existence of some other Southeast Asian countries that also celebrate Lunar New Year. When it's "Chinese" New Year, it's specifically referring at the Chinese. Then what about the Laos, the Korean, the Vietnamese, etc. They can't celebrate the Chinese New Year in Chinese style because each Asian country will have its own traditions for the holiday.

Let us call it Lunar New Year to appreciate our world diversity. Besides the Gregorian calendar used by the entire world, we use the Lunar calendar as part of our social life to associate a lot of rituals and traditions.

Let us call it Lunar New Year so that other countries will not feel left out on their biggest holiday of the year. Seeing a commercial or a big banner saying “Happy Chinese New Year” is like walking into someone’s birthday big birthday party on your birthday, observing people saying "Happy Birthday" to the other person and celebrate their big day when it’s also your big day but no one really knows and cares.


For us, Lunar New Year is not just the first day of a new year. It is the day of reunion where children and grandchildren come back to visit their home and family, to look back and reevaluate how their previous year has been, and to make new resolutions for the next year. Where everyone gives each other the most wonderful wishes, eats delicious traditional cuisines, and has an excuse to go shopping, refresh their look and redecorate everything. It remarks a fresh start.

In fact, Lunar New Year is NOT what we “borrow” and celebrate as something “foreign,” it is part of our culture. Culture is not what we create; it is what we inherit and pass on through generations. Through years of history, every culture must have been impacted by a lot of other culture to create its own uniqueness. So please be open-minded enough to respect other people's ethnicity and background.

Cover Image Credit: Kappit

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I'm The College Girl Who Likes Trump And Hates Feminism, And Living On A Liberal Campus Is Terrifying

I will not sugarcoat it: I don't feel safe on my own campus.

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I will get right to the point: being a conservative on a liberal college campus in 2019 downright terrifying.

At my university, I'm sure about 90% of the population, both students and faculty, are liberals. They are very outspoken, never afraid to express their views, opinions, and feelings in several ways. There are pride events for the LGBT community, a huge celebration for MLK day, and tons of events for feminists.

Then there's the minority: the conservatives. The realists. The "racists," "bigots," and "the heartless." I am everything the liberals absolutely despise.

I like Donald Trump because he puts America first and is actually getting things done. He wants to make our country a better place.

I want a wall to keep illegals out because I want my loved ones and me to be safe from any possible danger. As for those who are genuinely coming here for a better life, JUST FILL OUT THE PAPERWORK INSTEAD OF SNEAKING AROUND.

I'm pro-life; killing an infant at nine months is inhumane to me (and yet liberals say it's inhumane to keep illegals out…but let's not get into that right now).

I hate feminism. Why? Because modern feminism isn't even feminism. Slandering the male species and wanting to take down the patriarchy is just ridiculous.

I hate the media. I don't trust anyone in it. I think they are all biased, pathological liars. They purposely make our president look like the devil himself, leaving out anything good he does.

I will not sugarcoat it: I don't feel safe on my own campus.

I mostly keep my opinions to myself out of fear. When I end up getting one of my "twisted" and "uneducated" thoughts slip out, I cringe, waiting for the slap in the face.

Don't get me wrong; not everyone at my university is hostile to those who think differently than they do.

I've shared my opinions with some liberal students and professors before, and there was no bloodshed. Sure, we may not see eye to eye, but that's okay. That just means we can understand each other a little better.

Even though the handful of students and faculty I've talked to were able to swallow my opinions, I'm still overwhelmed by the thousands of other people on campus who may not be as kind and attentive. But you can't please everybody. That's just life.

Your school is supposed to be a safe environment where you can be yourself. Just because I think differently than the vast majority of my peers doesn't mean I deserve to be a target for ridicule. No one conservative does. Scratch that, NO ONE DOES.

I don't think I'll ever feel safe.

Not just on campus, but anywhere. This world is a cruel place. All I can do is stand firm in my beliefs and try to tolerate and listen to the clashing opinions of others. What else can I do?

All I can say is... listen. Be nice. Be respectful of other's opinions, even if you strongly disagree. Besides, we all do have one thing in common: the desire for a better country.

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Dear Young Voices Of America, Stand Up, Speak Up, And Do Something

Our time is now.

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Dear young voices of America, I think we can both agree that we are sick of being told we are America's future while simultaneously being told our opinions don't matter. Now I personally do not listen to the people that tell me I'm better seen than heard; however, I know there are people that are a little timider when it comes to raising their voices. I am here to encourage you to be loud and speak up on topics that matter to you. There is no better time than the present to make your voice heard. Whether you are advocating for change in your school or the government, your opinion matters and is relevant.

We are the future of our country. How are we supposed to evoke change and reform if we can't have our voices heard? I call bullshit and I think it's time to take action. Even if you're the first or only person to advocate for your cause, be that person. Don't be afraid of anyone that tries to stand in your way. The only person that can stop you from speaking up for yourself and your cause is you. No matter how many nos you have to hear to get a yes or how many doors you have to knock on to get someone to open up, never give up. Never give up on your cause, never give up on yourself or the people you're representing, just don't do it. There is someone out there that supports you. Maybe they're just too shy to raise their voice too. Be encouraging and be supportive and get people to take a stand with you.

It is never too early or too late to start thinking about your future or to take action. But don't hesitate to say something. The sooner you start speaking up, the sooner you have people joining you and helping you, and the sooner you start to see and experience change. So get up, make that sign, write that letter, make that phone call, take part in that march, give that speech. Do whatever you feel fit to get your point across. Shout it from the rooftops, write it on your profile, send it in a letter, ignore everyone that tries to tell you to give up. Maybe they don't understand now, maybe they don't want to listen, maybe they're afraid to listen, but the more you talk about it and help them understand what exactly you are trying to get across, they will join you.

Even when it feels like you have nobody on your side but yourself, I am on your side. I will cheer you on, I will march with you hand in hand, I will write letters and make phone calls and help you find your voice. My life changed when I found my voice and yours will too.

So dear young voices of America, the time is now. Your time is now. Don't be afraid of the obstacles that you may have to face. Someone is out there waiting for you, waiting to grab your hand and march on with you. As Tarana Burke once said "Get up. Stand up. Speak up. Do something."

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