On Tuesday, March 16th, eight people, six of whom were Asian American women, were killed by a white gunman. We're horrified by this act of violence. We stand and mourn with both the families affected and with Asian communities.
We do not accept the excuse that this person was just “having a really bad day” or was “fed up and at the end of his rope.” He targeted and killed Asian American women. He sought out three massage parlors where Asian American women worked. This was an intersectional hate crime based on sexism, racism, and targeting sex workers.
This horrendous act occurred in a social-political environment fostering anti-Asian hate. Racist ideology during the pandemic has led to Asian people experiencing serious assaults, leading to both mental and physical injuries.
And it's not only happening in the US. In fact, Canada has a higher number of reported hate crimes per capita than the United States. According to a report by the Vancouver police department, Anti-Asian hate crimes in Vancouver rose by 717% from 2019 to 2020.
This systemic anti-Asian racism in Canada is not new. It has long existed, with the 1885 Chinese Head tax, 1923 Chinese Exclusion Act, and 1942 Japanese Internment camps. The COVID pandemic has only amplified racist sentiment and violence, as it did during the SARS pandemic in 2003.
It’s essential to remember and say the names of the people lost to this horrific act of racialized and gender-based violence.
Soon Chung Park, age 74
Hyun Jung Grant, age 51
Suncha Kim, age 69
Yong Yue, age 63
Delaina Ashley Yaun, age 33
Paul Andre Michels, age 54
Xiaojie Tan, age 49
Daoyou Feng, age 44
We stand with the Asian and Pacific Islander community. We want to express our sincerest sympathies to the families and friends who have lost loved ones. Or who have experienced Anti-Asian racism.
Let’s not stand by. Here are safety tips from Stop AAPI Hate about what to do, if you experience or witness anti-Asian or other types of hate crimes.
And here is where you can report any racist violence in Canada: Covid Racism