Democrats introduce Bruce Lee resolution
By Pete Kasperowicz - 05/11/12 09:28 AM ET
Five House Democrats on Thursday honored the life and legacy of martial-arts instructor and actor Bruce Lee for his teachings and his role as a bridge between American and Chinese cultures.
H.Res. 654, offered by Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.), recognizes the "immense impact that Bruce Jun Fan Lee had on American and global popular culture and the important role he played in creating a bridge between cultures, championing values of self-respect, self-discipline and tolerance in our nation, and pioneering and cultivating the genres of martial arts, martial arts films, fitness and philosophy in the United States and the world."
The resolution traces the life of Bruce Lee, who was born "in the hour of the Dragon, between 6 and 8 a.m., in the year of the Dragon on Nov. 27, 1940, at the Jackson Street Hospital in San Francisco." Lee returned to Hong Kong at a young age, and after beginning his life in martial arts, came again to the United States in 1959 "with only $100 to his name."
Lee taught the art of Gung Fu to help pay for his education, and the resolution praises him for teaching martial arts to non-Chinese people in the United States.
"In 1965, Bruce's willingness to teach martial arts to non-Chinese individuals as a way to bridge the cultures angered many in the field, and forced him to defend himself and his freedom to teach, but victory in this contest paved the way for a spectacular and revolutionary discovery of blending physical fitness, Gung Fu and street combat into what is now called Jeet Kune Do," it reads.
Lee started his work in film in 1971, culminating in the making of "Enter the Dragon" in 1973. But in that same year, Lee fell into a coma and died at the age of 32.
"Bruce would not live to see the opening of his film, 'Enter the Dragon,' nor would he experience the accumulated success of almost 40 years of all his films' popularity," the resolution says.
Reps. Hansen Clarke (D-Mich.) and Laura Richardson (D-Calif.), and Dels. Eni Faleomavaega (D-American Samoa) and Gregorio Sablan (D-Northern Mariana Islands) co-sponsored the resolution.