Pandemic of hate against Asians

A brutal attack in which a 67-year-old woman was punched more than 125 times has renewed calls for urgent action to address a rise in anti-Asian hatred.

New York Times (NYT) reported that security camera footage of last Friday’s attack showed the woman “pushing a cart” as she returned to an apartment building. When she opened the door, a man “walked up behind her and hit her head with his right hand with a roundhouse”.

After “the force of the blow caused the woman to fall to the ground”, “the attacker would bend over and hit her repeatedly with both hands for the next minute”. He also “stomped on her seven times and spat on her before walking away”.

The newspaper added that the “horrific” attack in the city of Yonkers in New York state had shocked many Americans. But it was “another incident in a nationwide surge” of “anti-Asian prejudice violence”.

High tide

Hate crimes against the Asian-American community in the US have “reached some unprecedented levels” over the past two years, as the Covid-19 pandemic fuels racism, the study found. NBC News.

Preliminary data collected by the Center for the Study of Hatred and Extremism at California State University shows a 339% year-over-year increase in 2021.

And reports of hate crimes against Asians in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and other major cities in 2020 were “up 124% year over year,” the broadcaster continued.

In New York City, last year’s tally was 133, up from 30 in 2020.

Other countries including the UK have also seen an increase in anti-Asian hate since China reported the world’s first confirmed Covid case.

According to a study by youth charity, anti-Asian hate speech increased by 1,662% in 2020 in the UK Remove label.

Police data also shows “an increase in hate crimes against Chinese in the UK during the coronavirus pandemic”. The Independent reported.

Liam Hackett, chief executive officer of Ditch the Label, told the paper that the charity’s research findings cast “a vital and sobering light on the very real and devastating experiences of millions of people.” people worldwide, as they battle not only their personal struggles but also the alarming rates of online toxicity and abuse”.

He added: “By far the most alarming data revolves around abuse directed at marginalized communities, with profound intensity around racism and Asian hatred. .

In May 2020, as Covid spread around the world, Human Rights Watch warned that governments need to take “urgent steps to stop the violence and racism, xenophobia and discrimination associated with the Covid-19 pandemic while prosecuting racial attacks.” aimed at Asians and people of Asian descent”.

The warning by the human rights group comes after United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that the pandemic could “trigger a tsunami of hatred and xenophobia, contempt and intimidation” of those living in poverty. of Asian origin.

Hate crimes against Asians reached a critical level in the US in March 2021, when eight people, including six Asian women, were fatally shot in Atlanta.

“Initially, both the police and the media accepted the claim that the shooting was carried out by a white male, with no racial motive.” Vox reported, “although the attacks focused on businesses run by Asians.”

The killings are “a breaking point amid a two-year rise in anti-Asian violence, in the form of brutal attacks on elderly people, vandalism of businesses and assaults on the street”. and led to the formation of the Stop Asian Hate movement.

Stop the hatred of Asians

Brianna Cea, a voting rights organizer from Brooklyn, told Vox she joined the Stop Asian Hate movement after “seeing people who look like me being targeted and people not realizing they’ve been targeted. clear goals because of what they look like.”

“What started as a slogan on social media has grown into a national movement,” said Vox, which has “remarkable achievements,” including “passing the hate crime law.” federal adversaries, encourage a new generation of Asian-American activists, and spark a dialogue on anti-Asian discrimination”.

But campaigners also face “big questions about where to go next”, with some expressing concern that “the policies that have been passed are not enough”.

In the UK, violence against East Asians and Southeast Asians has “led to a radical transformation in these communities”, writes Diana Yeh, senior lecturer in sociology at City, University of London, in an article on openDemocracy.

“Migrant communities are coming together in response to an increase in racist violence”, creating “a significant historic moment for the organization of the present East and Southeast Asian community”. happening at an unprecedented rate,” Yeh continued.

While “the Covid experience has devastated and traumatized our community, it has also forged a new sense of anti-racism, leading to the development of new mobilization networks.” .

But the movement to stop racist attacks still has a long way to go.

‘Attack and beat’

Human Rights Watch said Asians and people of Asian descent “have suffered attacks and beatings, violent bullying, intimidation, abuse and racism” as tensions rise in the region. epidemic.

Last week’s attack on a woman in New York was described by Yonkers Police Commissioner John J. Mueller as “one of the most horrific assaults I have ever seen.”

“Beating a helpless woman is despicable,” he said in a statement, “and targeting her because of her race makes it even more so.”

The victim, whose name has not been released, “had broken bones in his face, bleeding in the brain and multiple cuts and bruises on his head and face,” the NYT reported. One suspect, Tammel Esco, 42, has been “charged with attempted murder and assault, both hate crimes, as a result of the assault”.

The article added that the brutal attack “seems unusual for the Yonker people”, “Census data shows that about 7% of the 200,000 residents are of Asian descent”.

But four Asians have died in recent months after being attacked in New York City, suggesting that the latest attack is part of a wave of hatred that is sweeping both the United States and the rest of the world. world. Pandemic of hate against Asians

Fry Electronics Team

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