posts 1 - 15 of 26
freemanjud
Boston, US
Posts: 257


Readings and Streamings:

Note: It’s important that you read and/or watch at least SIX (6) of the 12 items listed below AND clearly reference them in your post. I would especially urge you to include within your choices #3 from Human Rights Watch (HRW) for a global perspective on this topic:


Reading options:

  1. Ivan Natividad, “Coronavirus: Fear of Asians rooted in long American history of prejudicial policies,” Berkeley News, February 12, 2020 https://news.berkeley.edu/2020/02/12/coronavirus-fear-of-asians-rooted-in-long-american-history-of-prejudicial-policies

  1. Stephanie Garcia, “’I am not a Virus’: How This Artist is Illustrating Coronavirus-Fueled Racism,” PBS, April 1, 2020. https://www.pbs.org/newshour/arts/i-am-not-a-virus-how-this-artist-is-illustrating-coronavirus-fueled-racism

  1. “Covid 19 fueling Anti-Asian Racism and Xenophobia Worldwide,” Human Rights Watch, May 12, 2020. https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/05/12/covid-19-fueling-anti-asian-racism-and-xenophobia-worldwide

  1. Anna Purna Kambhampaty and Haruka Sakaguchi, “’I Will Not Stand Silent.’ 10 Asian-Americans Reflect on Racism During the Pandemic and the Need for Equality.” Time, June 25, 2020. https://time.com/5858649/racism-coronavirus/

  1. Sarah Li, “Anti-Asian Hate Has Surged during the Coronavirus Pandemic, Reports Find,” Teen Vogue, September 18, 2020. https://www.teenvogue.com/story/anti-asian-racism-stop-aapi-hate

  1. Felix Sitthivong, “Coronavirus has sparked another epidemic in my prison: Anti-Asian Racism,” The Marshall Project, December 3, 2020. https://www.themarshallproject.org/2020/12/03/coronavirus-has-sparked-another-epidemic-in-my-prison-anti-asian-racism

  1. Liz Mineo, “The scapegoating of Asian Americans,” Harvard Gazette, March 24, 2021. https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2021/03/a-long-history-of-bigotry-against-asian-americans/

  1. Michael Eric Dyson, “Why don’t we treat Asian American history the way we treat Black history,” Washington Post, March 26, 2021. https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/asian-black-atlanta-history/2021/03/26/9f10a9ac-8d98-11eb-9423-04079921c915_story.html

  1. Jay Caspian King, “The Myth of Asian-American Identity,” The New York Times Magazine, October 5, 2021. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/05/magazine/asian-american-identity.html

  1. Sakshi Venkatraman, “Asian hate crimes rose 73% last year, updated FBI data says,” NBC News, October 25, 2021.https://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/anti-asian-hate-crimes-rose-73-last-year-updated-fbi-data-says-rcna3741

Streaming options:

  1. Video from the Los Angeles Times: Epidemic of Hate: Asian Xenophobia and Coronavirus, February 3, 2020 [7:55] https://youtu.be/7nlenypkMww [7:55] and the accompanying article Suhuana Hassan, “Fear of coronavirus fuels racist sentiment targeting Asians, Los Angeles Times, February 3, 2020. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Z4iu--gthgMAwX2iuQdjeCkrGDwqvmTx/view?usp=sharing

  1. Article and video: Erin Donaghue, “2,120 Hate Incidents Against Asian Americans Reported During Coronavirus Pandemic,” CBS News, July 2, 2020 https://www.cbsnews.com/news/anti-asian-american-hate-incidents-up-racism/

__________________________________________________________________________

The former President repeatedly referred to it as the “China virus” or the “Asian flu.” Insofar as we first became aware of a COVID-19 in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, that association has regrettably stuck for many Americans. And what COVID has unleashed, not only in the United States but in far-flung places around the world, is anti-Chinese vitriol and, because of the long history of Asian interchangeability by non-Asians, anti-Asian views more broadly.


Xenophobia directed at Asians isn’t new, as we will see this week in class. What COVID has inspired is just the latest in a long history of anti-Asian hate.


President Biden signed S.937, the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, sponsored by Senator Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), in May 2021. At the signing ceremony, Biden spoke eloquently of the “why” behind the legislation:


“We heard how too many Asian Americans have been waking up each morning this past year genuinely — genuinely — fearing for their safety just opening the door and walking down the street, and safety for their loved ones. The moms and dads who, when they let their kids out the door to go to school, were worried.

Attacked, blamed, scapegoated, harassed during this pandemic. Living in fear for their lives, as I said, just walking down street.

Grandparents afraid to leave their homes even to get vaccinated, for fear of being attacked.

Small business owners targeted and gunned down.

Students worried about two things: COVID-19 and being bullied.

Documented incidents of hate against Asian Americans have seen a shocking spike — as the Vice President has outlined at the front of her comments. Let alone — let alone the ones that have never been reported.

Gut-wrenching attacks on some of the most vulnerable people in our nation — the elderly, low-wage workers, women — brutally attacked simply by walking outside or waiting for a bus. Asian American women suffer twice as many incidents of harassment and violence as Asian American men.

And the conversation we had in Atlanta is one we’re hearing all across the country, that all of this hate hides in plain sight — it hides in plain sight — and too often, it is met with silence: silence by the media, silence by our politics, and silence by our history.

For centuries, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, Pacific Islanders — diverse and vibrant communities — have helped build this nation only to be often stepped over, forgotten, or ignored. You know, lived here for generations, but still considered, by some, the “other” — the “other.” It’s wrong. It’s simply — to use the phrase — it’s simply un-American.

My message to all of those of you who are hurting is: We see you. And the Congress has said: We see you. And we are committed to stop the hatred and the bias.”


The Asian and Pacific Islander (AAPI) population in the United States, according to the US Census (as of 2020), is believed to number approximately 20 million people, roughly 7.7% of the total population in the nation. It constitutes the fastest growing population in the United States. According to the Pew Research Center, Asian-Americans constitute the “highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group in the United States.”


So many non-Asians can’t distinguish among Asians and Pacific Islanders—witness Valerie Soh’s keenly observed short All Orientals Look the Same [pointedly using the pejorative term, “Orientals”] so they lump AAPI all together. Not unlike the Native American voices we heard who wish that we would identify Native peoples by their tribes and not label them all “native” or “indigenous,” many Asians/Pacific Islanders too wish people would acknowledge their specific places of origin, their differing circumstances, cultures, and histories, and not simply assume that “sameness.”


We know that Asians/Pacific Islanders have been the target of dismissive language; think of the episode last fall when then Boston School Committee chair, Michael Loconto, was caught on tape (in fall 2020) mocking Asian names. And they have been the target of growing violence—think most especially of the killings of Asian women at spas in Atlanta in spring 2021.


So why the hate? Why is this hate not new but is based in a long history of anti-Asian discrimination? And why are most non-Asians—and some Asians--minimally aware of this history?


Maybe those are foolish questions. What we know from our work on discrimination and othering thus far is that issues of “us” and “them,” “superiority” and “inferiority,” the desire to identify an “in group” and an “out group” govern much of human interaction.


How have Asians/Pacific Islanders—who we already know are classified as “white” when it’s convenient (think of the example of the Boston School Committee) and are also classified as “other” or “POC”—confronted this othering? The latest version may be triggered by COVID but we know this has a long and sordid history. And what should non-Asians do today to be allies in response to what these articles and the video clips chronicle?


Please weigh in on these questions in a thoughtful, well-supported post, supported by what you learned from class, from the readings and from what you know from your own experiences. And please do post a question for the next person to post (and respond to the question posed prior to your posting!).


red
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 11

Asians/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hater Crimes in the Era of COVID

The anti-asian hate that has only recently been brought to widespread public view should not be seen as a surprise given the history of racism and prejudice in America. It’s obvious in the Japanese internment, the 279 hate crimes against Asians in 2020 in the US, the Chinese Exclusion Act, the Page Act, the dehumanization of the AAPI community, “The Chinese Massacre”, the fetishization of Asian women, and the blatant ignorance on the part of America on the whole. In the beginning days of Angel island, Asian immigrants were often held for disproportionate amounts of time because they were suspected of carrying “diseases” perpetuating the hysteria against Asians on the baseless notion that Asians were disease carriers, which began the arduous path of AAPI in America paved with racism, xenophobia, and prejudice. Among other, such as the “model minority”, and the binary conversations about race, that revolve around Black and White relations, as well as the unjustly perceived notion that Asian Americans are less assertive than African Americans in the fight for equality, continue the misconceptions of the Asian American experience in the U.S. With the rising amount of hate through vernacular such as “Kung flu” and “Chinese virus” and Anti-Asian hate crimes having increased more than 73 percent in 2020, according to the FBI reported NBC news, movements surrounding fighting and raising awareness around the racism facing AAPI. For example the #IAmNotAVirus , started by Asian French activists to counter the racist hysteria surrounding the origin of COVID being in Asia. As stated by Michael Dyson of the Washington Post, asserting the formative population of Asian Americans is something that has yet to be established, creating a divide in the fight against racism in the U.S., contrasting the established African American culture that supports movements such as Black Lives Matter. However, we continue to overlook the crucial role Asian Americans have played in American history and culture through, “the Pulitzer Prize-winning writing of Jhumpa Lahiri, the poetry and hip-hop artistry of Mona Haydar, the trailblazing ceramic art of Toshiko Takaezu, Feng Zhang’s innovations on the CRISPR technique for altering DNA, or the pioneering work in semantics and politics of scholar-turned-senator S.I” (Dyson 2), and many others. Recognizing and appreciating the contribution of Asian Americans to the nation’s identity is the beginning of reckoning with the population’s treatment in this country. The hateful narrative that Asians are the “enemies” in WWII and in economic plights and rivalries, has continued an ‘othering’ of the Asian culture in America, while the “model minority” myth obscures the wealth inequality and racism facing Asians by labeling them as “white”. Berkeley News highlighted the continuation of racism in America facing AAPI through phrases such as “yellow-peril” and laws that limit the amount of Asian students and scholar immigrants, which emulates the previous Chinese Exclusion Act and Page Act. This racism is a global issue, in Veneto Italy the governor stated, “the country would be better than China in handling the virus due to Italians’ “culturally strong attention to hygiene, washing hands, taking showers, whereas we have all seen the Chinese eating mice alive.” reported in the Humans Rights Watch. All over the world racist ideas have spread from baseless prejudice notions and continue to harm the AAPI community. For allies the most important thing is to listen honestly to the facts that AAPI have faced and continue to face disgusting acts of violence and racism in America and all over the world and help raise AAPI voices to spread awareness and begin supporting the fight for change. Listening to voices in the AAPI community and the stories they have to tell. Sjöblom, a cartoonist, who is working on a graphic novel that encapsulates some of the AAPI experiences with racism is an example of someone’s story that should be heard. Sun-Jung Yum, ‘23 class of Harvard and co-president of Harvard Radcliffe Asian American Society, states “It’s really important that not only do we donate now, but that we also keep on talking about this,” exemplifying that continuing the conversation is crucial to working to fix the problems.
cnovav
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 14

Asian/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hate Crimes in the Era of COVD

Considering just what we have learned this year about this country’s history, it shouldn't be a surprise that that anti-Asian hate has only just recently been addressed. The hate incidents did not start at the beginning of the pandemic. They did not start when Trump was elected as president. They’ve been happening for many, many years. I don’t think it’s even possible to wrap your head around why anyone would feel that it is productive to engage in or encourage hate incidents against Asians/Pacific Islanders, especially during a time where the country is already split over how to properly manage a life threatening virus for many and life altering virus for every single person living in the county. I have never met an Asian person who has enjoyed this pandemic or felt as though it was necessary. Which is something that many people seem to think. They seem to believe that because the virus allegedly came from Wuhan, China, that every single Asian person is to blame. The majority of Asian people being attacked aren’t even from Chinese descent, but of course, the stereotype that all Asians are from China is sadly still alive and well. People living their normal lives, going grocery shopping, eating a restaurant, walking down the street, are being attacked and murdered because of a country’s ignorance. And although this did not start with Trump, we cannot deny the fact that he gave these people a safe place to be hateful and violent. How is it that a person who is meant to lead a country and keep the country united during a crisis, was allowed to refer to COVID-19 as the “Asian virus”, “Kung Flu”, etc? How is it that he was allowed a platform to blatantly discriminate against and encourage discrimination against a large population of the very country he claims to love? If the president of a country says these things, of course the people living in the country are going to believe it’s okay to do the same.


Not only are Asians/Pacific Islanders being physically hurt, their businesses are as well. Kim Lam, the owner of a restaurant that was extremely popular before the pandemic, says his sales have gone down over 50%. Not because he or his employees are doing anything different, but because of the ignorance of the American people. Since the beginning of the pandemic, politicians have made it clear that they care about the economy, and the economy only. They claim they want to help all businesses who are struggling due to the pandemic. Why are business owners like Kim Lam, not being helped? Why are the thousands of people in the same position as him, not being helped?


I don’t think there is a clear answer to why people choose to hate. I honestly think it’s a mental illness. Nothing more, nothing less. If we continue to give these hateful people a platform, these incidents will never end. Maybe we can never change every single racist person’s beliefs about Asians and other races, but we can certainly take their power to express their hate away. Sure, we can always take time to educate the general public, but at the rate things are going, I don’t think that’s the most effective way to go about solving this issue. I think in order to be allies in this situation, we have to be prepared to be upstanders whenever possible and whenever it is safe to do so.


In 2020 alone, anti-Asian hate crimes have increased by more than 73% according to FBI reports. This should be enough to anger us all, and enough for us to stand up for change.


To the next person, I ask, do you think these problems can be “fixed”, if so, what would a “fixed” problem look like to you?

jellybeans101
Boston, MA
Posts: 11

Similarly to the Asian American Identity article in the NY Times. I have a hard time truly finding my identity. I feel as though the only trait people associate with Asian Americans is being smart. Then in the aspect of music, culture, or dressing, there is no thing that screams Asain American. I find it that people will say subliming things like “oh you act white” or “you dressed black or ghetto today” I find myself constantly asking myself, where do I even fit in? If I portray myself as white, am I more likable, or more likely to get a job? If I listen to certain rap artists are people now assuming I’m trashy or if I talk that’s not in a way that is perfectly pristine do others think any less of me?


“You know, it’s just very honest, and I haven’t heard any songs from Arab Americans about this. And it makes more sense than doing this honky-tonk folk stuff you love so much. Like how do you even credibly pull off standing on a stage and pretending this isn’t happening to you?”

I think the thoroughly relates to me as I tend not to speak up about how I feel when it comes to people talking about my race.


Seeing how Covid has affected Asain hate in all of these articles sparks a realization that the next generation has to stand up and speak.

“In the UK, Asian people have been punched in the face and taunted, accused of spreading coronavirus. Two women attacked Chinese students in Australia, punching and kicking one and yelling “Go back to China” and “you f****g immigrants.” Two men attacked a Chinese-American in Spain and beat him so badly that he was in a coma for two days. A man with a knife attacked a Burmese family in Texas.

In Africa, there have been reports of discrimination and attacks on Asian people accused of carrying coronavirus, as well as foreigners generally, including in Kenya, Ethiopia, and South Africa. In Brazil, the media have reported harassment and shunning of people of Asian descent”

We can see that this is happening everywhere in the world, I find it interesting as I never saw this displayed in the media. Also relating to the article about how Asain history isn’t talked about. It seems like my Asian American culture has been swept under the rug and almost erased as our culture has almost been Americanized in my opinion.

“Disparate groups, having overcome oppression, have made this country whole. Until we understand the ways in which the Asian American story is in many ways like the African American story, we won’t be able to reckon with tragedies like Atlanta. Vincent Chin ought to be as well known, and as righteously mourned, as George Floyd. The best way to set us on our path is for the lived experiences of Asian Americans, like those of African Americans, to be viewed as essential to an understanding of the nation’s identity.”

I never heard enough about these problems and I feel almost as if the school as a system talks and addresses other instances and has never addressed Asain hate head-on.

Growing up, in middle school I had kids telling me my food smelt bad, and they would play games where all of the girls would run away from me. Just because I was Asain. I constantly found myself changing to fit in everywhere I went. If the girls wore uggs and leggings I begged for the same things, I tried so desperately to look or act white. And I will admit nothing has changed from my middle school days into high school. I feel like when you think of a beauty standard in America you think of someone white. Going out with friends who were all white and having me sticking out like a sore thumb being an Asain has always made me want to look different. Boys would say really snarky stuff to me like “You’re really pretty….for an Asain” I find identity such a hard thing to navigate when I’ve never been able to develop without constantly feeling the need to fit in.

I think being an ally starts with being aware of what you say. I think the article “I will not stand silent” is very important. Especially the photos show an aspect of difference in facial features of Asian Americans that people tend to overlook, as seen in the in-class video of how “all Asians look the same”.


OverthinkingEnigma
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 17

Asians/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hate Crimes in the Era of COVID

America’s history of anti-Asian hate and discrimination has not been often discussed whether that be in a school, job, or home setting--Why is that so? Asians/Pacific Islanders, along with all people of color, have heavily contributed to America’s development and progress, yet Asian history is not highly discussed when the topics shift toward America and racism. One cause for this is the minimization of anti-Asian hate when compared to communities such as the Black community and their prominent history with America’s discrimination and racism. American society has had a habit of comparing the Asian and Black communities’ reactions to discrimination, injustice, and hate-- therefore making a competition of suffering out of serious issues. According to Michael Dyson’s article, “Why don’t we treat Asian American history the way we treat Black history,” (Washington Post), Asian Americans are portrayed to be “less assertive” in their fight compared to Black people despite the undeniable fact that the two communities’ histories and hardships are equally intertwined with American history. Additionally, although anti-Latino and anti-Black hate crimes are higher in raw numbers, Anti-Asian hate crimes have risen a shocking 73% over the course of 2021 according to Sakshi Venkatraman’s article “Asian hate crimes rose 73% last year, updated FBI data says” on NBC News. This frightening data doesn’t even supply an accurate number considering the fact that Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the most hesitant to report hate crimes according to Sakshi’s data. Moreover, the Washington Post additionally states that the lack of well-known/iconic Asian figures has also contributed to the lack of discussion on Asian history; when one thinks of the Black civil rights movement, Martin Luther King immediately comes to mind, but when one’s asked to name a prominent figure in the Asian civil rights movement, names like Yuri Kochiyama never resurface. Simply put, Asian American history is wrongfully written off as a subplot in American history so it begs the question--How have Asians/Pacific Islanders reacted to this othering?

Because of the steep incline of Anti-Asian hate brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, America’s history Anti-Asian hate has resurfaced--the foundation of those topics is the “othering” of Asians/Pacific Islanders-- therefore Asian Americans have taken stands, an example being the Stop AAPI hate organization. As stated in Anna Kambhampaty & Haruka Sakaguchi’s article “’ I Will Not Stand Silent.’ 10 Asian-Americans Reflect on Racism During the Pandemic and the Need for Equality,” Stop AAPI hate “recorded 2,583 such incidents across the U.S between March 19 and August 5” and it’s with this data that they’ve been able to pinpoint possible solutions to reducing Anti-Asian hate crimes, for example, resolving online-bullying: “programs should work to provide AAPI students with culturally sustaining and responsive wellness services. AAPI students should be empowered continuously through affinity groups, student coalitions, and collective action toward educational and racial equity. According to their experts, student-led workshops involving anti-bullying practices can reduce bullying by 25% and lead to a 20% decrease in victimization.” Moreover, Asians/Pacific Islanders have also pointed out that historic events such as the bombing of Pearl Habor, the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882, and general economic recessions were the foundation of America’s racist Asian stereotypes and fear of ‘invasion.’ This fear could be seen in America’s nonconsensual and highly invasive examination and questioning of Asian immigrants on Angel Island between 1910-40s. As mentioned in Ivan Natividad’s article, “Coronavirus: Fear of Asians rooted in long American history of prejudicial policies,” 225,000 Chinese and Japanese immigrants were detained on Angel Island for several months and were subjected to various medical examinations--without consent--and highly specific questioning. At that time--and arguably till this day--racist America saw Chinese and Japanese individuals as invaders, disease carriers, and competition. Till this day, all Asians/Pacific Islanders are assumed to be either Chinese or Japanese despite the various Asian ethnicities that exist; whether you truly were or weren’t Chinese/Japanese didn’t matter as racist Americans saw one thing, ‘invasion.’ It’s these harmful stereotypes and assumptions that Asians/Pacific Islanders hope to eradicate as they encourage the redefining of cultures and countries. However, most Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders have also refrained from direct action out of fear of violence, confusion, or hesitance. Most anti-Asian hate crimes are verbal and occur in public without any prior context. A prime example of this is Felix Sitthivong’s experiences in his prison as one of the few Asian Americans there, according to the article “Coronavirus has sparked another epidemic in my prison: Anti-Asian Racism,” The Marshall Project:“...a White student blurted out that it didn't matter if China and Japan were different countries because "they are all gooks anyway." I panicked… I sat there for a moment, hoping somebody would speak up on my behalf. Then I contemplated how I—a genuine practitioner of nonviolence who still has to abide by the convict code of retribution—was going to react.”

It’s undeniable that Asians/Pacific Islanders are all too familiar with the discrimination and disparities of racist America, so what must non-Asians do to be better allies? Firstly, implementing ethic courses like Facing History into all schools’ curriculums would educate future generations about America’s racist history and present as well as the sociology behind this state. Non-Asians should also supply Asians/Pacific Islanders with better support systems that are culturally sustaining and responsive. AAPI should be empowered whether that be through advocacy groups or programming, for example, in the Harvard Gazette, “The scapegoating of Asian Americans,” the Harvard-Radcliffe Asian American Association created a fundraiser dedicated to supporting Asian advocacy groups in Boston and Atlanta which non-Allies can still donate to. Furthermore, stopping anti-Asian hate is a collaborative effort as history continues to have an impact on the present, so communities must band together to support and empower Asians/Pacific Islanders.
OverthinkingEnigma
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 17

Originally posted by cnovav on January 07, 2022 11:48

Considering just what we have learned this year about this country’s history, it shouldn't be a surprise that that anti-Asian hate has only just recently been addressed. The hate incidents did not start at the beginning of the pandemic. They did not start when Trump was elected as president. They’ve been happening for many, many years. I don’t think it’s even possible to wrap your head around why anyone would feel that it is productive to engage in or encourage hate incidents against Asians/Pacific Islanders, especially during a time where the country is already split over how to properly manage a life threatening virus for many and life altering virus for every single person living in the county. I have never met an Asian person who has enjoyed this pandemic or felt as though it was necessary. Which is something that many people seem to think. They seem to believe that because the virus allegedly came from Wuhan, China, that every single Asian person is to blame. The majority of Asian people being attacked aren’t even from Chinese descent, but of course, the stereotype that all Asians are from China is sadly still alive and well. People living their normal lives, going grocery shopping, eating a restaurant, walking down the street, are being attacked and murdered because of a country’s ignorance. And although this did not start with Trump, we cannot deny the fact that he gave these people a safe place to be hateful and violent. How is it that a person who is meant to lead a country and keep the country united during a crisis, was allowed to refer to COVID-19 as the “Asian virus”, “Kung Flu”, etc? How is it that he was allowed a platform to blatantly discriminate against and encourage discrimination against a large population of the very country he claims to love? If the president of a country says these things, of course the people living in the country are going to believe it’s okay to do the same.


Not only are Asians/Pacific Islanders being physically hurt, their businesses are as well. Kim Lam, the owner of a restaurant that was extremely popular before the pandemic, says his sales have gone down over 50%. Not because he or his employees are doing anything different, but because of the ignorance of the American people. Since the beginning of the pandemic, politicians have made it clear that they care about the economy, and the economy only. They claim they want to help all businesses who are struggling due to the pandemic. Why are business owners like Kim Lam, not being helped? Why are the thousands of people in the same position as him, not being helped?


I don’t think there is a clear answer to why people choose to hate. I honestly think it’s a mental illness. Nothing more, nothing less. If we continue to give these hateful people a platform, these incidents will never end. Maybe we can never change every single racist person’s beliefs about Asians and other races, but we can certainly take their power to express their hate away. Sure, we can always take time to educate the general public, but at the rate things are going, I don’t think that’s the most effective way to go about solving this issue. I think in order to be allies in this situation, we have to be prepared to be upstanders whenever possible and whenever it is safe to do so.


In 2020 alone, anti-Asian hate crimes have increased by more than 73% according to FBI reports. This should be enough to anger us all, and enough for us to stand up for change.


To the next person, I ask, do you think these problems can be “fixed”, if so, what would a “fixed” problem look like to you?

This was a very insightful response and I had a quick question: do you think ethics/sociology courses --like Facing History-- should be implemented into schools' curriculums? Will these courses have an actual impact on non-Asians and potentially reduce anti-Asian hate crimes in the future?

pink12
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 15

Asians/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hater Crimes in the Era of COVID

The anti-Asian hate that has recently been talked about all over the media only became apparent after the pandemic started. Anti-Asian hate has been occurring for years but why is it that just now people have started to notice and hear about it? With the black community also facing lots of racism, this may have taken the public eye away from noticing Asian/Pacific Islander hate. The arrogance and misinformation that Americans have heard over the years, has deeply played into the racism against COVID. After hearing that COVID most likely started in Wuhan, China many people believed that Asians were the problem and reason for the pandemic. Although not all Asians are from China, people's arrogance and false beliefs played into the problem that caused unnecessary hate and targeted Asians in public places.

Anti-Asian hate has been all over the media especially after the pandemic started. After the former president used the term "Chinese virus" this only made matters worse. For all the people who look up to him and believe any information, he says this wasn't good. The government didn't do a good job with handling these racist claims and remarks or stopping Asian hate. From choice 3, Human Rights Watch states, "Since the outbreak of the pandemic, Asians and people of Asian descent have been targets of derogatory language in media reports and statements by politicians as well as on social media platforms, where hate speech related to Covid-19 also appears to have spread extensively." Not only did public official President Trump state racist inaccurate remarks, but Mike Pompeo who's the secretary of state encouraged hate speech by calling it the "Wuhan virus". Especially with the media broadcasting and people talking about these terms, some people started using them and aggressively targeting Asian people.

From Teen Vogue, Sara Li states, "A combination of mass hysteria, xenophobia, and political discord has brought a quantifiable surge in hate." She also states, "In one of the survey responses, a 16-year-old wrote: “It’s demeaning to see fellow Americans ridiculing, harassing, and abusing other Asian Americans. I find it absolutely disgusting how Trump calls it the ‘Chinese virus,’ which leads to more xenophobia. We should be coming together to overcome this rather than harassing people who aren’t at fault.”. A widely believed phenomenon is that all Asians are from China. Although this is unfortunately still believed today, Asian's in America who have never lived or even been to China were put to blame for this virus reaching the united states. People were scared to leave their homes or go into certain public settings thinking that they could be attacked or targeted.

In Liz Mineo, “The scapegoating of Asian Americans,” the article explains some of the brutality that Asian Americans have faced for simply being Asian. She states, "In February, an 84-yeard old Thai man died after he was shoved to the ground in Oakland, California’s Chinatown. Since the start of the pandemic, Asian Americans have become the target of xenophobic attacks, much like Muslims were blamed and scapegoated after the 9/11 attacks." Anti-Asian violence crimes have been occurring since the 19th century. Thye have become more apparent after the pandemic with Asians constantly being confronted and blamed for a virus that has been placed on their backs as their fault.

Many people who were targeted often didn't fight back or would just try to ignore the racial slurs that they were called. Some contemplated but realized how it just wasn't worth it to fight over something that is just so distinctly inaccurate. In an article by Felix Sitthivong, he is an Asian American living in jail during the pandemic. He states, "I sat there for a moment, hoping somebody would speak up on my behalf. Then I contemplated how I—a genuine practitioner of nonviolence who still has to abide by the convict code of retribution—was going to react." He didn't want to sit in silence any longer, and realized how much these comments hurt and affected them and were only going to stop if he spoke up for himself, and it worked.


booksandcandles
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 12

Asians/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hate Crimes in the Era of COVID

Anti-Asian sentiments have existed for a long time, but have only just begun to be seen as a real problem. With the influx of anti-Asian hate in the midst of, and caused by, the pandemic, we must ask ourselves the question: Why so much hatred?

In her article for the Harvard Gazette, titled "The scapegoating of Asian Americans," Liz Mineo discusses the modern history of bigotry against Asians in America. This goes back to World War II, where we saw the forced internment of 120,000 Japanese Americans, 62% of whom were citizens of the United States. The murder of Vincent Chin, who was mistaken for Japanese, was brought on by anger surrounding the rise of the Japanese auto industry. This scapegoating of Asian Americans is prevalent now because COVID originated in China, so people have been placing the blame on all Asian people, which is not factual nor is it just. People always look for someone to blame for their problems. We can't deal with it being our fault or no one's fault. It's easy to put that blame on a group of people, but it shouldn't happen. It's the result of stereotypes and prejudices coming from a long time ago. I also think that the reason non-Asian groups and individuals are less aware about the hate that has happened in the past is simply that it doesn't involve or relate to them. It also hasn't really been publicized. The American government can't really say that they were wrong in basically imprisoning over 100,000 innocent people in the 40s, so people don't know it's happening, let alone that it's wrong. It also comes from fear: fear of bombings like Pearl Harbor, fear of the coronavirus -- people are afraid of what might happen so they blame another group and take comfort in the group mentality of a "common enemy." Now, if we put that mentality and made COVID the enemy, we might see some real progress, but I digress.

With articles like the one by Sara Li from Teen Vogue, we can see how some Asian Americans have been confronting the hate and discrimination they face. Young people all over the country have told their stories on social media, news stories have come out about the increase of hatred from non-Asian communities surrounding the pandemic, and there have been many reports of violence based on this. In the PBS article, "I am not a virus," one artist depicts her struggles and the experiences she has seen reflected in others' lives in a series of illustrations. There was one panel that hit the hardest for me. It depicts a mother sitting with her kids on the sofa, telling them that "because of the virus, there's a chance that people may say or do mean things to us." The fact that people all over the country have to tell their children that they will be treated differently because of who they are is depressing and angering. This happens in so many different instances, but with the rise of anti-Asian hate and other discrimination, it must be occurring rather frequently.

The good thing is, that with the rise of hate comes the rise of awareness. With all these incidents being publicized and posted, shared and tweeted, with the help of more people we can raise awareness and hopefully fix the problems we have before they can get worse.

watermelon2
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 17

Facing AAPI Hate

At the signing ceremony of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act when Biden gave his speech, his overall message was, “We see you.” Yet, as an Asian-American, hearing this statement can feel contradictory, since we are living in a country where Asian-Americans are in fact not seen or heard. In the last couple of years, Asian-American hate has surged throughout our country. Innocent elders are attacked, others are beaten for having the virus even when they don’t, youth are told they’re not smart enough to be Asian, etc. And as an Asian-American girl myself, situations such as someone squinting their eyes, asking where I’m from, or making assumptions about me have become a constant and expected part of my life. As these hateful acts are taking place throughout the country, it often feels like no one is listening to the struggles.


I often find myself wondering, why all the hate? What did the Asian-American community do that was so wrong? Recently, after the spread of COVID-19, hate surged because of Asians being supposedly responsible for the virus. According to CBS News, “Coronavirus is spreading fear and discrimination,” and in 2020, AAPI hate crimes rose 73%. This hate stemmed from misinformation- as the president himself was calling it the “China Virus.” This AAPI hatred, however, didn’t only emerge because of COVID-19; discrimination against the Asian-American community is not unprecedented. Although there is currently a rise in both hate crimes and awareness about AAPI hate, it comes from a long and unacknowledged history of anti-Asian discrimination. Throughout history, Asians have never been welcomed in America, but instead were subject to harsh laws such as the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, discriminatory terms such as “yellow peril” starting in the 1800s, or Japanese Internment during World War II. Since we are living in a country built on ideas of Asian hate, this has a heavy influence on the AAPI hatred that continues to persist today.


Ever since I was little, my life as an Asian-American girl has always been about not fitting in. Whether I go to school, sports practice, or am simply taking the train home, I am in an environment where I look different from everyone else. And for many Asian-Americans, there is a desire to be white, which Lisa Wool-Rim Sjöblom encapsulates perfectly in her drawing of an Asian boy painting his face white. Yet, no matter what, Asian-Americans are never white enough nor black enough, meaning they don’t get the privileges of being white but also aren’t acknowledged as being oppressed. Depending on circumstances and what’s convenient for others, Asian-Americans are expected to live up to whatever idea of them is put into place, which is often being expected to fit into the Asian stereotypes and the model minority myth.


Yet there are many ways that Asian-Americans are taking steps to address this almost unacknowledgement of their presence. And many individuals, regardless of their power, are capable of taking action. Many AAPI are confronting this othering of their race in any way possible, whether it’s through protests, words, artwork, music, dancing, stories. Sjöblom explains that “A lot of things that I comment on, which are often seen as quite controversial, people tend to understand it better or show more empathy when they see my drawings.” The point is, especially given all the recent anti-Asian hate, the AAPI community has been standing up. Movements such as the “Stop AAPI Hate” group are working to make the problems Asian-Americans have to face known, as well as combat them. Their website alone has opportunities to report incidents of hate, learn about the AAPI community, obtain resources and news, and more. Through groups such as these, community lead protests, or social media, the message is clear. Asian-Americans are no longer ok with their voices being silenced.


Despite the hard work and voices raised of Asian people throughout the country and the world, most non-Asians are still unaware of the discrimination and hatred that the Asian community has to face. This lack of awareness about the historical and current anti-Asian hate is complex and there are many factors. Firstly, these acts of hatred aren’t always physical, but often verbal or even subtle. Sjöblom explains that “for a lot of white people, in order for them to understand racist attacks, you basically have to be punched in the face and to show a bruise.” Although these physical attacks do take place, many of the verbal attacks are just as hurtful. Additionally, many are unaware of anti-Asian hate because they were never taught about it. Asian-Americans get very little recognition in history; textbooks often teach history and race through a white/black narrative. Growing up and learning about this history myself, I often found myself wondering, wait- what about me? Where is the Asian community during this time? Nevertheless, despite the acts often being verbal and the few people that are informed, don’t be confused. As Felix Sitthivong said, “hate is not a mistake.” These are reasons that many are unaware, but are in no way reasons that are excusing or capable of justifying the hateful actions that take place. Non-Asians can take action too. A big part of being an ally means standing up and not being a bystander. According to an article published by TeenVogue, of AAPI hate incidents, bystanders only intervene 10% of the time. After all, the words “We see you,” said by Biden, are reassuring, but what’s even more reassuring is the feeling that others are actually there for you.


Feeling free and safe to be yourself is the most important aspect of life, and Asian-Americans don’t have this. This is a problem not only in America, but around the entire world. As Asian-Americans are targeted in America, Asians in Australia are getting attacked and told to “leave and die,” boycotts and attacks take place against Muslims in India, and more. Asian discrimination is happening in America, Africa, Europe, and even Asia itself- everywhere. Furthermore, Asian-American women are 3 times more likely to be subject to anti-Asian hate than Asian-American men (according to Russel Jeung) and 14% of hate crimes are against youth under 20. Therefore, as an Asian-American girl myself, I know I am directly affected and it scares me. So hearing Biden say that “We see you,” although I know it isn’t true today, it is still comforting and makes me hopeful for the future. I Hope for a future where I don’t have to worry about getting dirty looks when I’m in public or about fulfilling others’ expectations of being the “perfect” Asian. I hope for a world where, as John Powell from UC Berkeley says, “there is no them. There’s only us, and we have to figure out how to go forward where everybody belongs and nobody dominates.”

watermelon2
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 17

Originally posted by booksandcandles on January 09, 2022 15:58

This goes back to World War II, where we saw the forced internment of 120,000 Japanese Americans, 62% of whom were citizens of the United States.

This sentence is extremely important. The fact that 62% of the Japanese-Americans forced into internment were citizens immediately stood out to me. It shows how even despite being citizens or working hard in the United States, Asian-Americans will still never be recognized as "truly" American. By forcing nearly 75,000 Japanese American citizens into internment shows how little citizenship or devotion to this country meant. In reality, one's citizenship wasn't valued based on a license or legally, but simply by the way they looked.

iris almonds
Posts: 18

Originally posted by watermelon2 on January 09, 2022 16:22

At the signing ceremony of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act when Biden gave his speech, his overall message was, “We see you.” Yet, as an Asian-American, hearing this statement can feel contradictory, since we are living in a country where Asian-Americans are in fact not seen or heard. In the last couple of years, Asian-American hate has surged throughout our country. Innocent elders are attacked, others are beaten for having the virus even when they don’t, youth are told they’re not smart enough to be Asian, etc. And as an Asian-American girl myself, situations such as someone squinting their eyes, asking where I’m from, or making assumptions about me have become a constant and expected part of my life. As these hateful acts are taking place throughout the country, it often feels like no one is listening to the struggles.


I often find myself wondering, why all the hate? What did the Asian-American community do that was so wrong? Recently, after the spread of COVID-19, hate surged because of Asians being supposedly responsible for the virus. According to CBS News, “Coronavirus is spreading fear and discrimination,” and in 2020, AAPI hate crimes rose 73%. This hate stemmed from misinformation- as the president himself was calling it the “China Virus.” This AAPI hatred, however, didn’t only emerge because of COVID-19; discrimination against the Asian-American community is not unprecedented. Although there is currently a rise in both hate crimes and awareness about AAPI hate, it comes from a long and unacknowledged history of anti-Asian discrimination. Throughout history, Asians have never been welcomed in America, but instead were subject to harsh laws such as the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, discriminatory terms such as “yellow peril” starting in the 1800s, or Japanese Internment during World War II. Since we are living in a country built on ideas of Asian hate, this has a heavy influence on the AAPI hatred that continues to persist today.


Ever since I was little, my life as an Asian-American girl has always been about not fitting in. Whether I go to school, sports practice, or am simply taking the train home, I am in an environment where I look different from everyone else. And for many Asian-Americans, there is a desire to be white, which Lisa Wool-Rim Sjöblom encapsulates perfectly in her drawing of an Asian boy painting his face white. Yet, no matter what, Asian-Americans are never white enough nor black enough, meaning they don’t get the privileges of being white but also aren’t acknowledged as being oppressed. Depending on circumstances and what’s convenient for others, Asian-Americans are expected to live up to whatever idea of them is put into place, which is often being expected to fit into the Asian stereotypes and the model minority myth.


Yet there are many ways that Asian-Americans are taking steps to address this almost unacknowledgement of their presence. And many individuals, regardless of their power, are capable of taking action. Many AAPI are confronting this othering of their race in any way possible, whether it’s through protests, words, artwork, music, dancing, stories. Sjöblom explains that “A lot of things that I comment on, which are often seen as quite controversial, people tend to understand it better or show more empathy when they see my drawings.” The point is, especially given all the recent anti-Asian hate, the AAPI community has been standing up. Movements such as the “Stop AAPI Hate” group are working to make the problems Asian-Americans have to face known, as well as combat them. Their website alone has opportunities to report incidents of hate, learn about the AAPI community, obtain resources and news, and more. Through groups such as these, community lead protests, or social media, the message is clear. Asian-Americans are no longer ok with their voices being silenced.


Despite the hard work and voices raised of Asian people throughout the country and the world, most non-Asians are still unaware of the discrimination and hatred that the Asian community has to face. This lack of awareness about the historical and current anti-Asian hate is complex and there are many factors. Firstly, these acts of hatred aren’t always physical, but often verbal or even subtle. Sjöblom explains that “for a lot of white people, in order for them to understand racist attacks, you basically have to be punched in the face and to show a bruise.” Although these physical attacks do take place, many of the verbal attacks are just as hurtful. Additionally, many are unaware of anti-Asian hate because they were never taught about it. Asian-Americans get very little recognition in history; textbooks often teach history and race through a white/black narrative. Growing up and learning about this history myself, I often found myself wondering, wait- what about me? Where is the Asian community during this time? Nevertheless, despite the acts often being verbal and the few people that are informed, don’t be confused. As Felix Sitthivong said, “hate is not a mistake.” These are reasons that many are unaware, but are in no way reasons that are excusing or capable of justifying the hateful actions that take place. Non-Asians can take action too. A big part of being an ally means standing up and not being a bystander. According to an article published by TeenVogue, of AAPI hate incidents, bystanders only intervene 10% of the time. After all, the words “We see you,” said by Biden, are reassuring, but what’s even more reassuring is the feeling that others are actually there for you.


Feeling free and safe to be yourself is the most important aspect of life, and Asian-Americans don’t have this. This is a problem not only in America, but around the entire world. As Asian-Americans are targeted in America, Asians in Australia are getting attacked and told to “leave and die,” boycotts and attacks take place against Muslims in India, and more. Asian discrimination is happening in America, Africa, Europe, and even Asia itself- everywhere. Furthermore, Asian-American women are 3 times more likely to be subject to anti-Asian hate than Asian-American men (according to Russel Jeung) and 14% of hate crimes are against youth under 20. Therefore, as an Asian-American girl myself, I know I am directly affected and it scares me. So hearing Biden say that “We see you,” although I know it isn’t true today, it is still comforting and makes me hopeful for the future. I Hope for a future where I don’t have to worry about getting dirty looks when I’m in public or about fulfilling others’ expectations of being the “perfect” Asian. I hope for a world where, as John Powell from UC Berkeley says, “there is no them. There’s only us, and we have to figure out how to go forward where everybody belongs and nobody dominates.”

I agree with everything you stated in the first paragraph. Biden stated that “My message to all of those of you who are hurting is: We see you. And the Congress has said: We see you. And we are committed to stopping the hatred and the bias.” But the fact is that Asian Americans are not heard and seen. As an Asian American myself, I do not feel heard and seen, having experienced discrimination much like most of my Asian classmates. For example, wearing a mask when everyone else isn’t can even be associated as a thing only Asians do. There are so many hateful acts that are taking place in this country and I agree with the fact that what Biden said was contradictory in many ways.

iris almonds
Posts: 18

Asians/Pacific Islanders: Xenophobia and Hate Crimes in the era of COVID

“The Asian community went “from being invisible” to bring “hyper-visible, but as a virus or as a carrier of a virus,” said Sjöblom. (from the article ‘I am not a virus.’ How this artist is illustrating coronavirus-fueled racism). The surge of the covid pandemic has led to a surge of anti-Asian acts of racism, discrimination, and hate crimes. What most don't know is that there is a long history of anti-Asian discrimination. What is sad to know is that almost all non-Asians and a lot of Asians that I personally know are not aware of this history. As an Asian myself, I would have to admit that I did not know and still do not know enough about Asian history. One reason being is the fact that Asian American history is almost never talked about in history classes. The closest that we ever get to talking about Asian history is with the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882 which prevented Chinese laborers from immigrating to the US. Other than that, nothing else is really talked about.


The article “Coronavirus: Fear of Asians rooted in long American history of prejudicial policies”, talks about how the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882 and how it was the first law to exclude an entire ethnic group. It talked about how upon the arrival on Angel Island, without consent, these immigrants were given invasive medical examinations. They were already known as disease carriers and they were often thought to have smallpox or the bubonic plague. This was all before covid. Moreover, what Americans want most is to preserve white dominance and China is seen as a threat to American global dominance. This is why there is an increase in hate crimes.


The covid pandemic has only made anti-Asian discrimination worse. Instead of being ignored, as Sjöblom stated, Asians are more visible than ever. Using cartoons and images, Sjöblom illustrated the hate crimes Asian Americans experience on a daily basis. She stated that she thinks that people are more willing to be sympathetic and more willing to take time to look at the image if it is in the form of a comic because pictures are more appealing in general. Anti-Asian discrimination is not limited to physical incidents but subtler incidents as well. People would often make little jokes that they actually think are funny, but it can actually be very harmful. In my personal experience, a lot of Asians would tend to internalize the incident if they experienced hate crimes because they don’t want to deal with the police and the law. This is due to the lack of understanding with the police and the lack of language capacity. One way to acknowledge the Asian community is to actually talk about it. In Sweeden, Sjöblom mentioned how racism is often not talked about. Sjöblom talked about how she moved her family away to a place where more Asians were located.


One reason why Asians often internalize and don’t report hate crimes is that when they do report the hate crime, nothing is really done about it. In the article “'I Will Not Stand Silent.' 10 Asian Americans Reflect on Racism During the Pandemic and the Need for Equality”, the story of Abraham Choi stood out to me. It talks about how Choi was in a bathroom in the Penn Station and a man from behind started to spit and cough on him. When Choi reported the hate crime, the police told him that spitting was not a crime and that it wouldn’t be worth the paperwork. Basically, the police are denying the fact that this hate crime incident happened and is turning Choi away. They think that it is not really serious and that you actually have to have a physical injury to be considered hurt. Many fear that if they spoke up, their loved ones will be hurt or attacked which is concerning.


The article “Anti-Asian hate crimes rose 73% last year, updated FBI data says”, states that there is a steep incline in Asian hate crimes. Many get away with hate crimes and think that it is okay to initiate a hate crime as they know they will not get in trouble. I think that one of the main reasons for the increase in hate crime is the fact that our very own president called it the “Chinese virus”. Since such a high government official called it the “Chinese virus” it is perceived as a term that is okay to be used. This article talks about one of the many hate crimes that have happened this past year in the spring of 2021, the attack of Asian women in Atlanta. The article, states “reopened national conversations on Asian American civil rights and led many to ask what it takes to constitute a hate crime. They can be hard to prosecute, experts say, and the laws that define them can vary largely from state to state”. It is so shocking to me that people would question whether this is even a hate crime or not. At the end of the article, it again talks about the fact that Asian Americans were the group that is least likely to report hate crimes, and one solution proposed in the article is mandatory hate crime reporting which I think is an awesome idea.


In the video “2,120 hate incidents against Asian Americans reported during coronavirus pandemic”, the owner of a restaurant in New York talked about how he has lost billions of dollars due to the loss of customers. He talks about the fact that the damage has already been done. We can see this in Boston’s Chinatown. There has been a lack of customers to many of the Chinese restaurants in Boston’s Chinatown, leaving business owners in a terrible situation. Many of the hate crimes and incidents of discrimination are subtle actions that go unnoticed. For example, Asians could just be grocery shopping or walking along the street and some person could yell an inappropriate term at them.


In the article “Coronavirus Has Sparked Another Epidemic in My Prison: Anti-Asian Racism”, the narrator mentioned how his white students stated that “they are all gooks anyways” but nobody stood up to that comment. The narrator also talks about a very common experience that a lot of Asian Americans have when attending a school consisting mostly of white students. He talks about how he has been made fun of because of his lunch and how it smelled different. When this incident happened, most students would just internalize it and ignore the insult.


At times, many Asian students would want to be white. Similar to how Sjöblom stated how she wanted to be white because it would mean that she would be accepted for who she was. Many Asian students today are ashamed of their own culture and want to be white simply because of the fact that they will be more accepted.


Asians are not black enough to be black and not white enough to be white. They are kind of in-between and never talked about as they are known as the model minority. The Pew Research Center stated “Asian-Americans constitute the “highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group in the United States.”, they also have to acknowledge the fact that Asians are the most economically divided group. And Asians are not the best educated because we are privileged, but because we have worked hard to gain that education.


The incident that happened in the Boston School Committee when Michael Loconto made fun of Chinese names is an act that I see too much in my own school community. Even teachers in BLS would automatically ask if you go by something else if it is a name that they themselves are not comfortable pronouncing. Some don’t even make the effort to learn people’s names and pronounce it incorrectly through the school year which is very concerning.


After much research conducted, we know that Asians aren’t more likely to contract covid than any other American, although many don’t seem to think that is the case. One thing that my parents have said that sparked my interest is them asking why the world didn’t call it the “British disease” when the delta variant was first found in Great Britain. Why is everyone stuck on the idea of calling it the “Chinese virus”? They talked about how there are far more cases in America than there are in China right now and how many Americans are blaming the spread of the virus in America on Asian Americans. This is despite the fact that it is Americans themselves who spread the virus.


All Asians have experienced some sort of discrimination and have probably internalized that experience. One way that non-Asians can help is simply listening to their stories and their concerns and also spreading awareness about it. You can also support the small businesses that have lost billions of dollars during the pandemic. One thing schools can do is to talk about Asian history beyond the Chinese Exclusion act. Also while reading all of these articles, I have not read anything about Southeast Asians, it is mostly focused on Eastern Asians and mostly the Chinese. This comes to show that the Asian population is diverse but they are often seen as one and the Southeast Asian community is often not acknowledged.


To the next person, one question to think about is: What do you know about Asian history and how Asians were treated before covid? How much of that information did you learn from school?


facingstudent8
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 18

Why the hate is an interesting question since it is a question every victim of oppression has found themselves asking. Hate based on where one comes from or looks like seems so silly but people experience hate for that very reason every day. There is a long history of this hate against those who are immigrants and any of those who are different. Ivan Natividad’s article “Coronavirus: Fear of Asians rooted in long American history of prejudicial policies” speaks to this fact of how Asian americans have long been discriminated against in this country. In the article it was mentioned how “Many of the [Asian] immigrants were quarantined and given invasive medical examinations and interrogations at the facility without their consent or actual evidence of disease.” This quote from the article is related to the incidents of hate we saw documented on the standagainsthatred.org. In many of the experiences Asian Americans recalled having a person refusing to go near them because they probably have covid. This was before the pandemic was widespread in the US. In both the instance of the immigration officers and the experiences from the in class activity we saw that there was no real evidence for people being worried about an Asian person giving them a disease and the only basis for concern that these racists used for thinking Asian Americans had a disease was their race. The lack of understanding of this history is largely due to how poor public education is generally especially surrounding the history of oppressed people. Asian americans are also often left out of the conversation when it comes to the fight for equal rights. Michael Eric Dyson referenced this in his article “Why don’t we treat Asian American history the way we treat Black history ” when he said “Asian American history is often footnoted or compartmentalized, recounted and analyzed as a subplot in the bigger narrative.” This quote draws attention to and emphasizes the fact that we should be focusing more on asian american history in curricula.

One way Asian Americans have confronted this othering is by fighting back by continuing to practice their culture and beliefs because that in itself is a protest to white supremacy. Just by existing and not assimilating has been a way to protest the system that has tried to oppress.Others can start to be allies by encouraging themselves and those around them to remember and teach this history. Erin Donaghue’s article “2,120 Hate Incidents Against Asian Americans Reported During Coronavirus Pandemic” talked about how the damage has already been done to Asian American communities in relation to the fear around covid. Restaurants have gone out of business and seen way less support during the pandemic in comparison to other establishments. One restaurant owner from Jing Fong said that the efforts of public figures eating at chinese restaurants haven’t helped. One thing that allies can do to help is to support Asian American businesses and dine at Asian owned restaurants more. There was also a report that “‘FBI hate crime data represents the tip of the iceberg and understates the magnitude of hate crime in America,’ Sim J. Singh, national advocacy manager of The Sikh Coalition, told NBC news in 2017. ‘The only way to bridge the data gap is for law enforcement agencies to adopt mandatory hate crime reporting’” according to Sakshi Venkatraman’s article “Asian hate crimes rose 73% last year, updated FBI data says.” This implies that law enforcement is not reporting hate crimes which is horrific and needs to stop. There should be a greater push from activitsts and allies to make these cases be reported on a federal level.


Why do you think that all these hate crime cases are under reported?


facingstudent8
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 18

Originally posted by iris almonds on January 09, 2022 20:08

“The Asian community went “from being invisible” to bring “hyper-visible, but as a virus or as a carrier of a virus,” said Sjöblom. (from the article ‘I am not a virus.’ How this artist is illustrating coronavirus-fueled racism). The surge of the covid pandemic has led to a surge of anti-Asian acts of racism, discrimination, and hate crimes. What most don't know is that there is a long history of anti-Asian discrimination. What is sad to know is that almost all non-Asians and a lot of Asians that I personally know are not aware of this history. As an Asian myself, I would have to admit that I did not know and still do not know enough about Asian history. One reason being is the fact that Asian American history is almost never talked about in history classes. The closest that we ever get to talking about Asian history is with the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882 which prevented Chinese laborers from immigrating to the US. Other than that, nothing else is really talked about.


The article “Coronavirus: Fear of Asians rooted in long American history of prejudicial policies”, talks about how the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882 and how it was the first law to exclude an entire ethnic group. It talked about how upon the arrival on Angel Island, without consent, these immigrants were given invasive medical examinations. They were already known as disease carriers and they were often thought to have smallpox or the bubonic plague. This was all before covid. Moreover, what Americans want most is to preserve white dominance and China is seen as a threat to American global dominance. This is why there is an increase in hate crimes.


The covid pandemic has only made anti-Asian discrimination worse. Instead of being ignored, as Sjöblom stated, Asians are more visible than ever. Using cartoons and images, Sjöblom illustrated the hate crimes Asian Americans experience on a daily basis. She stated that she thinks that people are more willing to be sympathetic and more willing to take time to look at the image if it is in the form of a comic because pictures are more appealing in general. Anti-Asian discrimination is not limited to physical incidents but subtler incidents as well. People would often make little jokes that they actually think are funny, but it can actually be very harmful. In my personal experience, a lot of Asians would tend to internalize the incident if they experienced hate crimes because they don’t want to deal with the police and the law. This is due to the lack of understanding with the police and the lack of language capacity. One way to acknowledge the Asian community is to actually talk about it. In Sweeden, Sjöblom mentioned how racism is often not talked about. Sjöblom talked about how she moved her family away to a place where more Asians were located.


One reason why Asians often internalize and don’t report hate crimes is that when they do report the hate crime, nothing is really done about it. In the article “'I Will Not Stand Silent.' 10 Asian Americans Reflect on Racism During the Pandemic and the Need for Equality”, the story of Abraham Choi stood out to me. It talks about how Choi was in a bathroom in the Penn Station and a man from behind started to spit and cough on him. When Choi reported the hate crime, the police told him that spitting was not a crime and that it wouldn’t be worth the paperwork. Basically, the police are denying the fact that this hate crime incident happened and is turning Choi away. They think that it is not really serious and that you actually have to have a physical injury to be considered hurt. Many fear that if they spoke up, their loved ones will be hurt or attacked which is concerning.


The article “Anti-Asian hate crimes rose 73% last year, updated FBI data says”, states that there is a steep incline in Asian hate crimes. Many get away with hate crimes and think that it is okay to initiate a hate crime as they know they will not get in trouble. I think that one of the main reasons for the increase in hate crime is the fact that our very own president called it the “Chinese virus”. Since such a high government official called it the “Chinese virus” it is perceived as a term that is okay to be used. This article talks about one of the many hate crimes that have happened this past year in the spring of 2021, the attack of Asian women in Atlanta. The article, states “reopened national conversations on Asian American civil rights and led many to ask what it takes to constitute a hate crime. They can be hard to prosecute, experts say, and the laws that define them can vary largely from state to state”. It is so shocking to me that people would question whether this is even a hate crime or not. At the end of the article, it again talks about the fact that Asian Americans were the group that is least likely to report hate crimes, and one solution proposed in the article is mandatory hate crime reporting which I think is an awesome idea.


In the video “2,120 hate incidents against Asian Americans reported during coronavirus pandemic”, the owner of a restaurant in New York talked about how he has lost billions of dollars due to the loss of customers. He talks about the fact that the damage has already been done. We can see this in Boston’s Chinatown. There has been a lack of customers to many of the Chinese restaurants in Boston’s Chinatown, leaving business owners in a terrible situation. Many of the hate crimes and incidents of discrimination are subtle actions that go unnoticed. For example, Asians could just be grocery shopping or walking along the street and some person could yell an inappropriate term at them.


In the article “Coronavirus Has Sparked Another Epidemic in My Prison: Anti-Asian Racism”, the narrator mentioned how his white students stated that “they are all gooks anyways” but nobody stood up to that comment. The narrator also talks about a very common experience that a lot of Asian Americans have when attending a school consisting mostly of white students. He talks about how he has been made fun of because of his lunch and how it smelled different. When this incident happened, most students would just internalize it and ignore the insult.


At times, many Asian students would want to be white. Similar to how Sjöblom stated how she wanted to be white because it would mean that she would be accepted for who she was. Many Asian students today are ashamed of their own culture and want to be white simply because of the fact that they will be more accepted.


Asians are not black enough to be black and not white enough to be white. They are kind of in-between and never talked about as they are known as the model minority. The Pew Research Center stated “Asian-Americans constitute the “highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group in the United States.”, they also have to acknowledge the fact that Asians are the most economically divided group. And Asians are not the best educated because we are privileged, but because we have worked hard to gain that education.


The incident that happened in the Boston School Committee when Michael Loconto made fun of Chinese names is an act that I see too much in my own school community. Even teachers in BLS would automatically ask if you go by something else if it is a name that they themselves are not comfortable pronouncing. Some don’t even make the effort to learn people’s names and pronounce it incorrectly through the school year which is very concerning.


After much research conducted, we know that Asians aren’t more likely to contract covid than any other American, although many don’t seem to think that is the case. One thing that my parents have said that sparked my interest is them asking why the world didn’t call it the “British disease” when the delta variant was first found in Great Britain. Why is everyone stuck on the idea of calling it the “Chinese virus”? They talked about how there are far more cases in America than there are in China right now and how many Americans are blaming the spread of the virus in America on Asian Americans. This is despite the fact that it is Americans themselves who spread the virus.


All Asians have experienced some sort of discrimination and have probably internalized that experience. One way that non-Asians can help is simply listening to their stories and their concerns and also spreading awareness about it. You can also support the small businesses that have lost billions of dollars during the pandemic. One thing schools can do is to talk about Asian history beyond the Chinese Exclusion act. Also while reading all of these articles, I have not read anything about Southeast Asians, it is mostly focused on Eastern Asians and mostly the Chinese. This comes to show that the Asian population is diverse but they are often seen as one and the Southeast Asian community is often not acknowledged.


To the next person, one question to think about is: What do you know about Asian history and how Asians were treated before covid? How much of that information did you learn from school?


A lot of what I know about Asian history comes from world history in school, specifically World 1 and AP World. I also learned from school how Asian Americans were treated horribly when immigrating here especially during the twentieth century. I also learned from Asian American friends that they often faced racism and hate and that it increased with the coming of covid. I knew that Asian Americans were also treated poorly before covid and the pandemic caused an increase in the amount of Asian hate and didn't cause it to begin. A lot of what I know about Asian American history came from school but that doesn't mean that we have covered it nearly enough as we should.

user01135
West Roxbury, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 14

Asians/Pacific Islanders and COVID: Xenophobia and Hate Crimes in the Era of COVID

American history surrounding anti-Asian hate has always been hidden. People begin movements across the country and try to say we are working towards a better, less racist America, while they completely ignore the amount of harassment Asian families face today. Anti-Asian hate has just recently begun being addressed by the public because of the pandemic. Asian families have been taking blame for the Covid-19 pandemic, which is incredibly discriminative. Why are Asian American people receiving so much hate and so much blame for this?

In the Human Rights Watch the problem of Asians receiving hatred since the beginning of the pandemic is addressed. The HRW talks about the language people have been using and the nicknames Asian people are being called. This level of hate speech has risen because of the pandemic, people are blaming the spread of the virus on Asian people, which is awful.

In the PBS article, "I am not a virus, an artist talks about works of art they found meaningful. They depict families and the struggles the pandemic has brought. It is awful that people have to teach their friends and families to prepare to be discriminated against for something they are also suffering from.

In the Washington Post article, "Why don't we treat Asian American history the way we treat black history", the history of Asians is portrayed as less important than black history. Asian Americans go through a lot of the same harassment that black people do and do not receive the same amount of respect after it. There needs to be more media surrounding the fight Asian Americans went through the way it is there for black history. Asian American history needs to be treated the way all history is treated, with respect.

In "The scapegoating of Asian Americans" we learn about acts of violence Asians receive. The amount of simple hatred for Asian Americans is so large that people actually commit acts of violence on them. People really think this is the best way to solve their problems. But as we all know, violence is never the answer.

I think a majority of this recent discrimination comes from Trump supporters. Trump often referred to Covid-19 with very racist and discriminative names, like the "China virus". Trump's supporters are listening to this and acting on their thoughts with hate crimes, that affect Asian communities. We need to find a way to have a level of equal respect for all races especially at such a high level, because clearly it creates problems when represented by such a powerful figure.


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