Emil Amok's Takeout from Emil Guillermo Media

The podcast companion to Emil Guillermo's Amok commentary on race, politics, and society from an Asian American perspective. If it's in the news, Emil has a take. An award winning journalist, columnist, talk-host and humorist, Emil's compilation of essays and columns,"Amok" won an American Book Award. He is a former host of NPR's "All Things Considered," and has reported and commented for radio and TV and newspapers, in Honolulu, San Francisco, Sacramento, Boston, Dallas, St.Louis, and Washington, D.C. Read his takes on the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund website at Emil also writes a column for the U.S. bureau of the Manila-based and on Diversity issues at
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Now displaying: February, 2017

Welcome to "Emil Amok's Takeout," a podcast featuring the takes of award-winning journalist and commentator Emil Guillermo on race, politics, and society from an Asian American perspective.

Beginning with Asian Week, Emil has written a weekly column on Asian America since 1991. It has since migrated to and to his own  His experience includes TV news reporting and anchoring in San Francisco, Dallas, and Washington, D.C.; Hosting "All Things Considered" on NPR; Nationwide newspaper op-eds and columns at SFGate and USA TODAY; Talk-show hosting in Washington,D.C. San Francisco, and Sacramento; And reporting for NBC News Asian America. A collection of his columns and essays won an American Book Award. 

Emil also worked on Capitol Hill as a speechwriter and press secretary for then-Congressman Norman Mineta.

Emil is also a voice-over artist, with videos for PETA registering more than 6 million views on youtube, with tens of millions more views on all platforms.


Currently, Emil writes for the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund at



Feb 27, 2017

In this episode, recorded days before the announcement of Trump 45's new travel ban, journalist and commentator Emil Guillermo talks to  Erika Lee, the director of the Immigration History Research Center at the University of Minnesota. She's the author of the book, "The Making of Asian America." 

If you’re Asian American,  not a visa overstay, nor a DACA recipient, you may have your head down and not be paying attention to all the new proposals on immigration and border security.

But a new proposal could impact Asian Americans and their families and friends.

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has proposed this idea: to collect private social media from Chinese visitors entering the U.S. on tourist and business visas.

National security is again the stated fear, even though there’s little evidence to justify such an invasion of privacy.

This unfair scrutiny based on race and national origin could result in unjust harassment, detention and should be a chilling reminder to Asian Americans whose ancestors were the first major group to be targeted and banned from the U.S.

“These types of actions do affect Asian Americans,” historian Erika Lee, director of the Immigration History Research Center at the University of Minnesota, told me on the AALDEF podcast, “Emil Amok’s Takeout.”  “Asian immigrants are the fastest, not only immigrant group in the United States, but the fastest growing undocumented immigrant group in the United States. So they are directly impacted by these interior enforcement and border security propositions and policies.”

Collecting information from Chinese business and tourist visa holders could just be the beginning of a greater overreach by the government.

On the week when a new revised travel ban is expected, Lee warns: “If any of our international relations with Asian countries get even more  rocky, who knows who will be added to the travel ban.”

Lee adds:  “I don’t think that class status or national origin protects new Asian immigrants from these policies. But certainly as Asian Americans, whose families have  lived through (the consequences of previous bans like Chinese Exclusion),  the need to act up is imperative. The need to talk about solidarity, and  show solidarity couldn’t be more clear.”

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You can contact me on twitter @emilamok

Or go to the aaldef blog…at

Thanks for listening to Emil Amok's Takeout



Feb 18, 2017
Ep.1: Emil talks with Phil Tajitsu Nash about EO 9066 and the internment of Japanese Americans during  WWII

Feb. 19 is the 75th anniversary of the signing of Executive Order 9066 by President Franklin Roosevelt. It was the start of a nightmare for Japanese Americans who were rounded up and placed in internment camps during World War II.

How did it happen? And could it happen again to another group?

Phil Tajitsu Nash is an Asian American history professor at the University of Maryland, a civil rights lawyer, and a board member of the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund.  

He talks about how Roosevelt came to sign 9066 despite information that should have negated any sense that Japanese Americans represented a threat.

He also talks about how the internment personally impacted his family.

Read more on the blog at


Feb 17, 2017
Special episode: Emil Amok's Takeout

Virginia Beach dentist Allan Bergano, an Asian American of Filipino descent wasn't going to go down without a fight.

A city road widening project was forcing him to move. But after spending more than $400,000, he went to the city for relocation costs and was denied.

Officials said there decision was final. There would be no appeal. 

Bergano sued the city in Federal Court. But it wasn't easy.

It was his sense of the historical discrimination faced by Filipinos in America that kept him focused on the fight.

Listen to the podcast. Read his story on the AALDEF blog,