The Hate Must Stop

By Ceyena Beard

Recently racial attacks against Asians, due to the speculation that they caused the deadly Coronavirus, have seen an uptick. This violence is due to hate and xenophobia that must stop.

It is believed the virus began in Wuhan, China, which fuels these beliefs.

According to the United Nations COVID-19 Response reported by Antonio Guterres in a report titled “We must act now to Strengthen the Immunity of our Societies Against the Virus of Hate,” it stated, “COVID-19 does not care who we are, where we live, what we believe or about any other distinction. We need every ounce of solidarity to tackle it together. Yet the pandemic continues to unleash a tsunami of hate and xenophobia, scapegoating and scare-mongering.”

According to the Harvard Gazette in an article titled “Rise of Violence, Harassment amid Pandemic part of Continuing Tale of Racism in U.S.,” it stated, “The Atlanta shootings that killed eight people, six of them Asian women, took place amid an upsurge in anti-Asian violence during the pandemic. The general rise in hostility that serves as the tragedy’s backdrop is part of the nation’s long history of brutal bigotry against Asian Americans.”

“Between March 2020 and February 2021… Asian American advocacy groups and the Asian American Studies Department of San Francisco State University, reported nearly 3,800 anti-Asian hate incidents in the U.S.” according to the article noted above.

The increase in crimes against Asian Americans is of major concern to College of Southern Nevada’s president, staff and students.

National Center for Education Statistics stated the matriculation rate of Asian students at CSN is 10% so this is a personal matter for the College.

CSN President Federico Zaragoza wrote in an email sent to students and staff, “Hate crimes are not consistent with the mission of CSN; therefore, crimes which target individuals due to race, color, religion, national origin, physical or mental disability or sexual orientation will not be tolerated.” CSN is excellent in allowing inclusivity and providing a safe learning space for its students.

CSN Professor Jennifer Basquiat, who teaches anthropology, gave a comment about the current Asian attack. “Leadership–or lack thereof—from the very top has made bigotry and hate acceptable. Former President Trump repeatedly racialized Covid-19 calling it the ‘China virus’ and endorsing the idea that Chinese people were responsible for creating and spreading Covid-19. People are turning a blind eye to xenophobia and racism. This lack of integrity and refusal to intervene and or stand-up for those being attacked makes standing by an act of complicity.”

To further capture the severity of the xenophobia many Asian people face today, CSN student Jiona Robledo, who is Japanese, gave a statement. “I believe the reason for this attack on Asian people and racism is due to the upbringing and fostering that environment. If you were taught by your family that a certain race was dirty it fuels the ongoing problem of racism.”  

As noted on the White House Fact Sheet from March 30, President Joseph Biden said during his first prime time address, “Anti-Asian violence and xenophobia is wrong. It’s un-American and it must stop.”

Biden announced new actions to respond to the increase in acts of anti-Asian violence, and to advance safety, inclusion and belonging for all Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities.

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