Stop Asian Hate

Photo courtesy of the New York Times

Photo courtesy of the New York Times

Lucy Dixon, Staff Writer

In the past year, Asian Americans have experienced an increase in hate crimes and racially-motivated harassment.

Many hate crimes are the result of China being blamed for Coronavirus. Phrases like “China virus” and “Kung-flu” have been circulating, and many non-Asian Americans, mostly white Americans, have used this as an excuse to harass people who look Chinese.

Asian hate crimes aren’t just the result of Coronavirus, though. Asian hate has always been a problem. “Go back to your country” is one of the common phrases, mostly used by American white supremacists, to discriminate against Asians, Hispanics, and more.

According to a study by USA Today, “Some 17% of Asian Americans reported sexual harassment, stalking, physical threats and other incidents, up from 11% last year. Half of them said the harassment was spurred by their race or ethnicity, according to the survey from anti-hate group ADL. Overall, 21% of Asian-American respondents said they were harassed online.”

Another form of racism against Asian Americans is the “model minority” stereotype. The model minority stereotype is the assumption that Asian Americans do not face discrimination because many Asian Americans are educated and/or wealthy.

This stereotype has been perpetuated through shows and movies like Crazy Rich Asians and Bling Empire.

This assumption that all Asian Americans are educated and wealthy causes discrimination and hate crimes against Asians to be overlooked.

“In reality, the community is America’s most economically divided: a 2018 study by the Pew Research Center found that Asian Americans experience the largest income inequality gap as an ethnic and racial group in the U.S. and a 2016 report from NYC Mayor’s Office of Operations found that Asian immigrants have the highest poverty rates in the city,” says TIME magazine.
Spreading false ideas, like that Asian Americans are a model minority and that they are responsible for Coronavirus, leads to hate crimes going unnoticed.
The movement #stopasianhate or Stop Asian American Pacific Islander Hate is a response to the rising hate crimes against Asians. There have been rallies, protests, petitions, etc. trying to bring awareness to racism against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
The murder of 8 women in Atlanta on March 16 sparked the #stopasianhate movement. Robert Aaron Long, a white man, went on a shooting spree in three different spas in Atlanta, killing 8 women, and 6 of the 8 were Asian.
Police refuse to acknowledge that this was racially motivated. Jay Baker, the policeman who arrested Long, said that Long “had a bad day,” suggesting that having a bad day is justification for murder.

Another example is the assault of Jung Kim on March 17. In Houston, two women went into a beauty store owned by Jung Kim, an Asian woman, and knocked down her displays and called her slurs.

When asked to leave the store, one of the women punched Jung Kim and attacked her son and husband when they tried to defend her. When leaving the store, one of the women tried to hit the store owners with her car.

Several elderly Asian Americans have been violently assaulted since this January, including a 64-year-old Vietnamese woman, a 61-year-old Filipino man, and a 91-year-old Chinese man. An 84-year-old Thai man, Visha Ratanapakee, was shoved to the ground on January 28 and died two days later.

These are just several of the thousands of recent hate crimes against Asians. According to TIME, “The NYPD reported that hate crimes motivated by anti-Asian sentiment jumped 1,900% in New York City in 2020. Stop AAPI Hate… received 2,808 reports of anti-Asian discrimination between March 19 and December 31, 2020.”

In order to reduce Asian discrimination, we need to stop normalizing harmful stereotypes, race blaming, and microagressions. To learn more about the #stopasianhate movement go to https://stopaapihate.org/.