On Tuesday March 16, a grievous tragedy occurred in Atlanta, where a white man targeted three Asian businesses, killing eight people, six of whom were Asian women.
The first attack took place around 5:00 p.m at a massage parlor killing four people, two Asian women, a white man, and a white woman. The killer then moved on to two other spas where four Asian women were killed in the shootings.
This tragedy comes at a time when the world is witnessing increased racism and violence against the Asian community, who are wrongly being associated with the outbreak of the Coronavirus that affects the whole world.
In response to the attacks, Stop AAPI Hate issued a statement in support of the families of the victims and the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) communities.
“The reported shootings of multiple Asian American women today in Atlanta is an unspeakable tragedy — for the families of the victims first and foremost, but also for the Asian American community, which has been reeling from high levels of racist attacks over the course of the past year. Few details about these shootings have been released, including whether or not they were motivated by hate”.
In addition, a report was also released this week by Stop AAPI Hate, which found that 3,795 racially motivated attacks have been committed against Asian Americans since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and concluded that this number probably represents only a fraction of the attacks that have taken place, as many have gone unreported.
Hollywood, shocked by the attacks, has also condemned the recent outbreak of anti-Asian violence. From Gwyneth Paltrow, Rihanna, Gemma Chan and Margaret Cho, many stars have spoken out.
“Please pay attention to what is happening”, wrote Gemma Chan on Instagram. “Racism and misogyny are not mutually exclusive. In fact, sexualized racial harassment and violence is something that many of us face regularly”.
The actress Lana Condor noted that, “Your Asian friends and family are deeply scared, horrified, sick to their stomachs and wildly angry […] please please please stand with us. Please. Your Asian friend needs you, even if they aren’t publicly grieving on social media”.
— Margaret Cho (@margaretcho) March 17, 2021
Even as we’ve battled the pandemic, we’ve continued to neglect the longer-lasting epidemic of gun violence in America. Although the shooter’s motive is not yet clear, the identity of the victims underscores an alarming rise in anti-Asian violence that must end.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) March 17, 2021