Instead of Urging Calm, WH Stoking Violence Against Asian Americans
During the coronavirus crisis, Americans are having to deal with an incompetent White House, a for-profit healthcare system ill-designed to handle waves of sick people, financial instability and a pandemic that currently has a 4 percent mortality rate. But, Asian Americans are facing another even more dangerous enemy — fellow Americans.
In the wake of the coronavirus hysteria, Asian Americans also have to worry about being physically assaulted by clueless Americans assuming that anyone who looks “Asian,” is a carrier. And since Americans are not exactly known for deep thinking, this means that non-Chinese people will also get attacked.
The country is currently on edge right now with many people looking for a scapegoat. Unfortunately, the White House has done absolutely nothing to calm the situation. They’ve actually egged it on. Asian American reporter Weijia Jiang recently complained that a White House staffer used the term “kung flu.”
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“With news of the coronavirus, we’ve seen an uptick in fear of people who look like this,” said Rosalind Chou, a professor at Georgia State University, according to CNN.
Several Asian Americans have already documented harrowing incidents:
- An Asian woman was verbally and physically assaulted on a New York subway car. She was also called a “diseased b****”
- Kao Lor and his uncle Lee Lor were barred from a Super 8 motel in Plymouth, Ind. because “Chinese weren’t allowed.” The Lors are from the Hmong ethnic group that is originally from Vietnam.
- Tanny Jiraprapasuke, who was born and raised in Los Angeles, was verbally assaulted on the subway, by a man, who said “Every disease has ever came from China, homie. Everything comes from China because they’re f****** disgusting.”
The country is currently on edge right now with many people looking for a scapegoat. Unfortunately, the White House has done absolutely nothing to calm the situation. They’ve actually egged it on. Asian American reporter Weijia Jiang recently complained that a White House staffer used the term “kung flu.” President Donald Trump was confronted about this during a recent press conference. He brushed it off and added that he didn’t think calling the coronavirus “the Chinese virus” or a “foreign virus” was racist. (The World Health Organization has warned against this.)
However, some Asian Americans are pushing back against the Trump administration’s callous attitude.
California Rep. Ted Lieu said Trump’s rhetoric was endangering Asian Americans.
“Trump’s rhetoric adds fuel to the growing fire of hatred being misdirected at Asian Americans. The fact that he is the president of the United States, who is responsible for the well-being of all Americans, only makes his rhetoric even more disturbing,” said Lieu in a Washington Post article.
Former NBA player Jeremy Lin accused Trump of empowering racism.
“I wish you would powerfully support the vulnerable people that will suffer due to our mismanagement of this virus, including those that will be affected by the racism you’re empowering,” said Lin in a tweet.
At this stage, it doesn’t matter where the virus originated. Viruses are agnostic, they’ll kill anybody no matter their race or political affiliation. Right now, we need to concentrate on stopping the disease, which is a public health hazard. And that requires international cooperation, including sharing research and successful counteractive measures.
However, no one should be surprised by Trump’s behavior. Trump is an open racist and he’s been that way for more than four decades. As president, he’s called African countries “sh*tholes,” claimed Nigerians, one of the most educated immigrant groups, live in huts and said all Haitians have AIDS. He also stocked his White House with neo-Nazis, such as Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, and tried to implement white nationalist policies that seek to maintain America’s white majority.
This is who he is. If you deny that, you’re lying to yourself. Incidentally, a Quinnipiac poll stated 91 percent of Republicans didn’t think Trump was racist! But most Republicans don’t believe in evolution, climate change or the coronavirus, so they have a history of denying reality!
But this is the danger of Trump and the reason why I, and many other Americans, were filled with dread when he was elected president. It’s one thing for an anonymous man to hold racist views, but when the most powerful man in the world holds pro-white ideas, he can turn those ideas into policy. And in this case, he’s willing to stoke anger and violence against a vulnerable minority group.