In shock and speechlessness from the news coming out of Atlanta: a 21 year old white man murdered eight people, six of whom are of Asian descent.
We at CAST convey our deepest condolences to the families enduring unimaginable suffering with the loss of their loved ones. Four of the eight are Delaina Ashley Yaun, 33, of Acworth; Paul Andre Michels, 54, of Atlanta; Xiaojie Tan, 49, of Kennesaw; and 44-year-old Daoyou Feng.
Dehumanizing individuals of Asian descent is not a new phenomenon. We were the Yellow Peril in the 1800s. There was The Chinese Exclusionary Act of 1882, the Japanese internment camps to former President Trump’s false blame of the genesis of covid-19 on the Chinese and his resulting nicknames. Highlighting and underscoring our foreignness has resulted in Asians not viewed as Americans, much less human.
I grew up in the 1960s, when racism and racialized hate was alive and blatant, and thought that kind of ugly violence was in our society’s rear view mirror. I was wrong, as Asians – women and the elderly in particular – are subjected to abusive slurs, mistreatment at stores and workplaces to acid attacks and physical violence. stopAAPIhate reported 3800 hate incidents occurring in last 12 months alone.
We at CAST stand in solidarity with those who in our neighborhoods and communities are stepping in to witness, watch over, and protect those of Asian descent. For if any one person is attacked, we are all vulnerable.