The Rise of Asian Hate crimes

Photo+courtesy+to+the+Boston+Globe

Steven Senne

Photo courtesy to the Boston Globe

Katie Le, Editorial Board

History/Origin

Asian hate crimes first started during the California Gold Rush in the 1850s. Major waves of Asian immigrants came to America in hopes of a better life, yet faced racism and discrimination when they got there. Chinese people especially faced harrassment when they immigrated to the U.S.. Chinatowns were burned down, Chinese people were lynched, and a law was made that directly targeted the group. This Federal law was named the Chinese Exclusion Act, which was passed in 1882 and banned all immigration of Chinese laborers. It was only a few decades ago when this act was repealed, but the hate crimes against Asian people remained. More so, there has been an increase in hate crimes against Asians recently because of the coronavirus.

Pandemic

The coronavirus originated in China, which caused some people to blame Asians for this pandemic. This caused many ill feelings towards Asians, and those feelings were amplified when our past president and other politicians called this virus the “Chinese virus” or the “Wuhan virus”. This hate towards Asian people caused a rise in Asian hate crimes and not much has been done to help protect them. These Asian hate crimes include racist comments made towards people and death threats. Not only do they face racist comments, but many have experienced physical assault. An elderly Asian man named Vichar Ratanapakdee died after being pushed and knocked to the ground. Antoine Watson, 19, was the perpetrator an

Photo courtesy to the Boston Globe (Steven Senne)

d was charged with murder and elder abuse. There have been many cases like this one, however, many tend to go unnoticed. According to the NYPD, hate crimes against Asians increased by 1,900% in New York amidst the pandemic. Stop AAPI Hate reported an increase in violence due to Anti-Asian sentiment, discrimination, and racism since the start of the pandemic as well.

Model Minority Myth

Asian hate crimes tend to not get as much attention due to stereotypes made about the community. The Model Minority myth is a prime example as it perpetuates the idea that although Asians have faced tremendous hardship, they have still come out successful. This stereotype enables people to dismiss and invalidate racism and hate crimes against Asians because they are “successful”, so they don’t face any of those problems. This myth also caused people to create standards for other minority groups, and created this narrative that if they work as hard as Asians (and get over their history of oppression), they will succeed too. The Model Minority myth has also given Asians the image of “perpetual foreigners” because of the foreign qualities they have. The Model Minority myth is extremely detrimental and overlooks the racial inequalities and racism this community faces.