People like me and families like mine have experienced anti-Asian racism in the United States for centuries, and especially now with the rise in anti-Asian violence in the last year. The pandemic has become an excuse for people to outwardly direct their racism and hate towards AAPI communities, and it is a painful reminder that there is no amount of love or education I can instill in my children to protect them from this kind of harm or the reality of white supremacy.
I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area from Michigan over a decade ago because, as a Chinese American woman, I wanted to live somewhere where I would feel safer among greater numbers of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs). But white supremacy, misogyny, and the violence they fuel is everywhere. Today, I mourn the eight people — six of whom were Asian American women — who were shot and killed by a white man who targeted three Asian-run spas in the Atlanta area.
So I dedicate myself to the fight for equity, justice, and accountability alongside my AAPI, Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and other allies, like you. The hope for better is sometimes about surviving the darkness of pain, trauma, and fear. Sometimes it is about more, but today, surviving is enough.
I invite you to connect with some of our AAPI partner groups doing important work today:
“Movements are born of critical connections rather than critical mass.”– Grace Lee Boggs, late Chinese American activist based in Michigan.
Irene Kao, Executive Director