Frequent attacks on Asians
The number of discrimination and hate crimes against Asians in the US has continued to rise since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the US.
According to a report released on Feb 9 by the US non-profit organization Stop Hating Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, between mid-March 2020 and the end of the year, the organization received 2,808 first-hand reports of "Asian hate" incidents, including in the capital, Washington DC, and as many as 47 states. There have already been a number of attacks on Asians in 2021.
On Jan 31, a 91-year-old man was violently pushed and fell to the ground mid-stride in the Chinatown area. The perpetrator also injured two other unsuspecting pedestrians.
On Feb 3, an Asian man was seriously injured in an unprovoked knife attack while taking the subway in Brooklyn. There were many onlookers present, but none helped.
On Feb 7, an Asian man was attacked for no apparent reason while waiting for a bus and his attacker cut off his finger.
On Feb 10, hydrochloric acid was poured on a group of Asian students and the victims' palms were burned.
On the night of Feb 26, a 36-year-old Asian man was stabbed with a sharp object in New York City's Chinatown and remains in critical condition.
On Feb 27, Chinese American basketball star Jeremy Lin tweeted a long message saying that even after nine years of playing in the NBA, he was still inevitably called "coronavirus" on the court.
The New York Times noted that a new wave of racism could set the US back to the era of the 'yellow plague', where Asian immigrants were seen as a threat to Western jobs and Western civilization. Asians are facing the twin threats of pandemic and racial discrimination.
Reticence cannot be the final solution
For a long time, many Asians have followed a culture of stoicism, unwilling to report to the police and bring more trouble. But growing tensions show that silence cannot be the answer.
On Feb 27 local time, events against racial discrimination and hate crimes against Asians were held in many parts of the US, from New York in the east to San Francisco in California on the west coast. People took to the streets to express their condemnation and opposition to Asian hate incidents.
Bill de Blasio: We need a more compassionate city
In the face of repeated hate crimes, local governments and organizations have finally spoken out and taken action to speak out against violent attacks against Asians.
On Feb 17, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city would not tolerate any discrimination against Asians. It needs to be framed as a stronger and more compassionate city.
On Feb 19, Asian and Pacific Islanders in the US Congress held a video conference to call on Congress to speed up legislation to impose tougher penalties for hate crimes against Asians.
On Feb 24, US Congresswoman Bill Mang introduces anti-Asian hate related resolutions, including expanding education on reporting hate crimes and issuing a guide to properly represent COVID-19 outbreak.
Once Asian Americans were silent, now they are stronger and have stood up. The courage to speak out is what makes change possible. Hopefully, the day when everyone is equal and no longer discriminated against is not far ahead.