People of Asian ethnicity have been viciously attacked in America throughout history. The frequency of such attacks has ebbed and flowed. It is flowing now. What might seem strange is that in 2021, there have actually been even more assaults than in 2020, a year in which such assaults spiked.
According to data aired on Shepard Smith’s CNBC show, anti-Asian hate crimes reported in New York City rose from 3 in 2019 to 28 in 2020 to now 33 in just the first three months of 2021. That’s not counting all the hate crimes that weren’t reported and all the assaults of Asian-Americans that may or may not have been hate crimes.
After a year of reporting focused on black and white controversies, now the media has struggled to report on hate crimes against Asian. Yahoo News has been among the worst, publishing articles that excuse the racist criminals engaging in the assaults. One article of theirs from February 19 said that the reason “anti-Asian racism goes unnoticed, or worse justified” is “in part due to the deep-seated and understandable resentment towards our community, which undeniably has more work to do to eradicate anti-Blackness.”
At this time when Asians are being beaten and killed, Yahoo writers are downplaying it, even seemingly justifying it, by blaming the Asian community (blaming them for wanting to have those who assault them locked up and have more police on the streets).
Why, I was just calling the Atlanta terrorist a racist in my last Substack. I think he should be charged and sentenced to death after he is convicted, not given some kind of alternative release back into the community with his gun rights and all rights still intact for the cause of progressive self-satisfaction.
Being so focused on the cause of “defunding the police” and blaming every single racist incident on “white supremacy,” progressive activists are ill equipped to address racism against Asians.
The idea that only white people can be racist
Tell that to the woman who was brutally assaulted by Brandon Elliot, who said, “You don’t belong here.”
How is it not racist to attack someone because of their race and tell them they don’t belong in America because of their race?
If a white man like Robert Aaron Long committed the same acts, he would be called racist, like I called him racist.
Did Brandon Elliot “not have power”? He did have the power to inflict serious injuries on an innocent Asian woman and make Asians fearful of walking the streets in their own cities and neighborhoods.
It goes back to the way academics and pseudo-academics tried to distort the definition of racism. But black political activists and groups do not lack power on an institutional level, either, and they often use it in positive ways. They have the power, for example, to influence corporations to speak out against racist voting restrictions.
“It’s all because of white supremacy”
The people who hold stereotypes and negative views about Asians are not exclusively white. Some of the people who hold stereotypes and negative views about Asians are also black or hispanic. Indeed, people of any race can hold racist views.
The idea that Asians “don’t belong here” has actually been expressed by black political figures like DC Mayor Marion Barry, who said in 2012, “We’ve got to do something about these Asians coming in, opening up businesses, those dirty shops. They ought to go.”
The same sentiment has been expressed in pop culture, including in the music of Ice Cube (“Black Korea”) and MC Eiht (“Off to the corner store, owned by the fuckin' Japs…”). (Both Ice Cube and MC Eiht are great rappers who made good music, and I’m not trying to cancel them. Marion Barry, not so much, but some in DC love him enough to build a statue of him outside of a federal building.)
This kind of stereotype of Koreans as “foreign,” “other,” and “strange” is not only held by some blacks, of course. Some whites have also trafficked in it, like Trump attacking Asians from 2015 to 2020. In “American History X,” the racist gang attacked the grocery store owned by “some fucking Korean” for the same reason.
White supremacy didn’t cause racism and bigotry to come about in places where whites don’t live or exercise power. Korean political activists didn’t make up conspiracy theories about Chinese voting in Korea’s 2020 elections because of white supremacy. Throughout history there has been strife between some members of different groups, and even between entire groups themselves, because of bigotry, racial resentment, and racism.
“Defund the Police”? Really?
Members of Black Lives Matter and progressive Democrats have been chanting “Defund the Police” for most of 2020. It has always sounded more like a slogan than a policy. Even when attempting to define it, activists argued “Defund the Police” did not mean defunding the police. Instead, they said it meant cutting funding to the police and spending more on social services.
In any case, America has always had a high crime rate, higher than European countries and much higher than East Asian countries. If there are abuses with the police, they can be reformed, but no rational person would think there should be no police. (Even Sen. Bernie Sanders, not to mention President Biden, said they oppose “Defunding the Police.”)
Brandon Elliot murdered his own mother. Another brute who assaulted a Chinese senior had been arrested over 30 times but wasn’t in prison. The police and city officials say he had been “mentally disturbed,” but that’s no reason for innocent people to be brutalized.
“Defund the Police” activists argue that “police are being called for mental health problems,” but actually police are often being called for assaults, threats, and robberies that may be being committed by people with mental health problems. The impact on the victims is the same. Mental health professionals cannot solve a beating, nor, in the above cases, have they been successful at getting the perps to stop their pattern of violent behavior after the 29th time.
Now I present my conversation with Batt, a Mongolian living and working in Washington DC, about his encounters on the street, his experiences facing racism, and the increased level of fear he feels now. It goes without saying that the above article is my view. His words are his view.
Watch (and read and watch other articles and videos by Asians and Asian-Americans; hear from a diverse range of Asian viewpoints and experiences):