March 18, 2021
Statement Against Violence and Xenophobia Faced by Asian Communities
On March 16, 2021, a white supremacist targeted three predominantly Asian-employed spas, murdering 8 people, at least 6 of them being Asian women. Over the past several months, we have seen a series of targeted attacks against the Asian community nationwide and here in the Commonwealth. These include: the murder of 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee in San Francisco who was senselessly tackled to the ground and succumbed to his injuries; the murder of 19-year-old Christian Hall in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, by police; and the murder of Angelo Quinto in Northern California, by police. In Quincy, Asian families have been verbally harassed and called racial slurs. At a Winchester Select Board meeting, a zoom bomber hacked into the meeting and called an appointed official a racial slur. StopAAPIHate has reported over 3,800 incidents of verbal harassment, assault, and bullying since March 2020, with women making up 68% of the reports. This does not include the incidents that have not been reported.
These incidents are connected to misogyny, white supremacy, and the historical portrayal of East Asians as the Yellow Peril, an imagined political, economic, or public health threat to U.S. society. Asians and Asian Americans continue to be seen as perpetual foreigners, which is evident in the racist rhetoric around COVID-19 and has spurred these xenophobic and violent incidents. Further, the history of the fetishization of Asian and Asian American women has been long linked to violence, exploitation, and hypersexualization. This continues to be a central theme in the increasing hate crimes targeting Asian women.
The Massachusetts Asian American Commission unequivocally and unapologetically condemns any type of racism or xenophobia against Asian communities. As a collective, we are committed to fighting for an anti-racist Commonwealth. Below we have outlined our current efforts to advance racial justice in Massachusetts:
- Demand our elected officials address and condemn racial violence
- Encourage the Asian community and allies to report incidents to StopAAPIHate.org and provide resources to do so locally
- Support community-based approaches by working with our community leaders and members of the Asian Caucus
- Develop translated Hate Crime resource guides and mental health resources through the AAC’s Anti-Asian Racism Research and Response Committee
Any form of hate cannot be tolerated. We call upon the leaders of this Commonwealth to join us in solidarity, to collectively work to eradicate hate. We deserve better. We demand better. We are stronger together.
How fetishization impacts the Asian community by Iowa State Daily
Racial Trauma Toolkit by Boston College
Asian Therapist Directory by the Asian Mental Health Collective
Event: MA Town Hall on Anti-Asian Racism | Thursday, March 25, 2021 @6PM
Violence Against Asians Resources by the Asian American Commission
Samuel Hyun, Chairperson
Philjay Solar, Vice-Chairperson
Haniya Syeda, Treasurer
Danielle Kim, Secretary
Vira Douangmany Cage
Nate Bae Kupel
Mary K. Y. Lee
Interim Executive Director
Co-Chairs of Anti-Asian Racism Research & Response Advisory Committee