Why not try real solutions?
Spokane could just decide to love its community more. Everyone wants less crime, but leaning on police to do all the work just creates more prisoners. We need to actually invest in our community; in each other.
“We are heartbroken and outraged by the murder of eight people – 6 of them women of Asian descent – in the shooting spree in Georgia. We mourn with the families of the victims, and we stand with the Asian American & Pacific Islander communities in Georgia.”
We must acknowledge the role of racism, classism, and racialized misogyny in the senseless violence committed against the six Asian women who lost their lives. It was not only a hate crime; it was an act of terror. White supremacy is the root of these acts of violence.
Asian American communities across the nation are grief-stricken, anxious, fearful and angry. We have seen the rise of anti-Asian violence and racism for over a year now. The Stop AAPI Hate coalition reported over 3,700 hate incidents between March 2020 and February 2021. We have also seen the escalation of hate crimes and racism against Asian across the State of Washington. We are concerned about the safety of ourselves and our loved ones.
We need to recognize that anti-Asian racism and violence is not a new phenomenon. Anti-Asian violence is interwoven in the history of Asian Americans in the United States. Early Asian immigrants were not only targets of violence by individuals, but systematic, mass violence such as the Chinese Massacre of 1871. Anti-Japanese sentiments of 1980s led to the murder of Vincent Chin, a Chinese American in Detriot, Michigan. After 9/11, people of South Asian descent became the target of hate crimes. The COVID pandemic has only pulled the cover that hid the anti-Asian racism already deeply ingrained in the U.S. society.
In this time, we call for solidarity with other communities of color. White supremacy devalues the lives of our BIPOC community – it has manifested in the racial disparities in the COVID pandemic over the past year and police brutality against BIPOC folks, specifically the Black community, without consequence. We recognize that the racism we experience is intertwined, and all of it is due to the common issue of white supremacy and white nationalism. We must fight against this violence, and call out the strategy of those in power who would like to see our communities turn against each other instead of moving forward together. We are much more powerful when we band together than when we are torn apart, and the support we have seen over the past 48 hours has shown a powerful future of what coalition and solidarity can and should look like.
We call for action from elected officials at the local, state and federal levels. Beyond publicly speaking up against anti-Asian racism, we ask our elected leaders to invest in community-based solutions that address the root cause of hate and violence. This includes funding, investment, and prioritization of 1) in-language and culturally responsive resources, crisis intervention support, and mental health services for our communities who have experienced harm 2) programs that support all immigrants and refugees including but not limited to safety net programs, unemployment benefits, LEP pathways, naturalization services, and more 3) ethnic studies curriculum, including Asian and Pacific Islander history, in our K-12 public schools and universities and 4) genuine and sustained engagement of our communities in policy discussions.
We ask that you join us in solidarity to support our communities and combat hate and white supremacy.
The Making of Asian America: A History by Erika Lee
American History Unbound: Asians and
Pacific Islanders by Gary Y. Okihiro