METROFOCUS: March 18, 2021

ASIAN AMERICANS ON EDGE AFTER ATLANTA SHOOTINGS

Fear and outrage is felt today from Atlanta to New York and across the nation as the country deals with the aftermath of the recent spa shootings that left 8 dead- including 6 Asian American women. And although the police have yet to classify this as a racially motivated crime- regardless of motive, the tragedy is clear for a community that has already been dealing with a dramatic increase in hate crimes targeted against them this past year. As part of our Exploring Hate initiative, examining the roots and rise of antisemitism, racism and extremism in America, tonight we are joined by community advocates who together, wrote an op-ed for the Daily News one year ago, about how malicious language blaming Chinese people for the coronavirus would lead to an increase in crime against Asian Americans. Today, there are almost 3,800 reported cases of hate against Asian Americans nationwide. Chris Kwok, a board member for the Asian American bar Association of New York and Jo-Ann Yoo, the Executive Director of the Asian American Federation join us.

Hate Crime Resources:

Asian American Federation

Stop AAPI Hate

Asian American Bar Association of New York

TRANSCRIPT

> THIS IS 'METROFOCUS' WITH JACK FORD AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY -- SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, SYLVIA A. AND SIMON B. POYTA PROGRAMING ENDOWMENT TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM.

THE PETER G. PETERSON AND JOAN GANZ COONEY FUND.

BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, THE AMBROSE MONELL FOUNDATION AND BY -- JANET PRINDLE SEIDLER, JODY AND JOHN ARNHOLD, CHERYL AND PHILIP LITTLE MILSTEIN FAMILY, JUDY AND JOSH WESTON, AND THE DR. ROBERT C. AND TINA SOHN FOUNDATION, THE JPB FOUNDATION.

> GOOD EVENING.

WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

I'M JENNA GFLANAGAN.

AS THE NATION CONTINUES TO DEAL WITH THE AFTERMATH OF THE RECENT SHOOTING IN ATLANTA WHICH KILLED EIGHT PEOPLE, SIX OF WHOM ARE ASIAN WOMEN, ASIAN-AMERICANS ACROSS THE COUNTRY AND ESPECIALLY HERE IN NEW YORK ARE ON EDGE.

THE TARGETS OF THE SHOOTINGS WERE THREE SEPARATE ATLANTA-AREA SPAS.

THOUGH THE POLICE HAVE YET TO CLASSIFY THIS AS A RACIALLY-MOTIVATED CRIME, THE INCIDENT HAS SENT SHOCK WAVES THROUGH THE ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY THAT HAS ALREADY BEEN DEALING WITH A DRAMATIC INCREASE IN HATE CRIMES THIS PAST YEAR.

AS PART OF OUR EXPLORING HATE INITIATIVE EXAMINING THE ROOTS AND RISE OF ANTI-SEMITISM, RACISM AND EXTREMISM IN AMERICA, WE ARE JOINED TONIGHT BY CHRIS KWOK, A BOARD MEMBER FOR THE ASIAN-AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK.

CHRIS, WELCOME BACK TO THE PROGRAM.

GOOD TO BE HERE.

AND WE'RE ALSO JOINED TONIGHT BY JO-ANN YOO, AN EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE ASIAN-AMERICAN FEDERATION.

JO-ANN, WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

JO-ANN IS ALSO HERE TO HELP US DISCUSS THE ATLANTA SHOOTING AND THE IMPLICATION IT HAS FOR THE LARGER ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY, ESPECIALLY HERE IN NEW YORK.

I'D LIKE TO START MY FIRST QUESTION ESSENTIALLY ADDRESSED TO BOTH OF YOU, BUT CHRIS I'LL START WITH YOU.

YOU BOTH WROTE AN OP-ED FOR THE DAILY NEWS ABOUT HOW MALICIOUS LANGUAGE BLAMING CHINESE PEOPLE FOR THE CORONAVIRUS WAS LEADING TO AN INCREASE IN CRIME AGAINST ASIAN-AMERICANS.

HERE WE ARE A YEAR LATER AND WE'VE SEEN AN ALMOST 3800 REPORTED CASES.

I REALLY WANT TO EMPHASIZE REPORTED CASES OF HATE AGAINST ASIAN-AMERICANS.

FIRST OF ALL, CHRIS, I KNOW WE'VE SPOKEN BEFORE, BUT IS 3800 EVEN THE RIGHT NUMBER THAT WE'RE DEALING WITH?

IT'S WHAT'S BEEN REPORTED TO SELF-REPORTING SITES ON THE WEB.

IF THEY DIDN'T EXIST, THEY WOULD HAVE DISAPPEARED.

WE WOULDN'T HAVE BEEN ABLE TO REFER TO THEM.

THEY'RE THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG.

JO-ANN, FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE, IF THE TRUE NUMBER IS MUCH HIGHER, WHY IS THAT?

I THINK THE TRUE NUMBER IS MUCH HIGHER.

I THINK IN NEW YORK, WE HAVE OUR OWN REPORTING SITE AND WE HAVE AND OUR NUMBERS REFLECT THE REPORTS DIRECTLY TO US AND ALSO FROM A HATE SITE AND OTHER SOURCES.

IN NEW YORK WE'RE SEEING ABOUT 500 SINCE LAST YEAR, BUT WE KNOW THOSE NUMBERS ARE REALLY LOW.

AT LEAST TEN, 20 STORES HAVE BEEN TOLD TO ME AND THEY HAVE NOT BEEN RECORDED.

THE REASON WHY PEOPLE ARE NOT REPORTING IT, A LOT OF REASONS.

IT'S A SENSE OF SHAME.

IT'S LACK OF LANGUAGE ACCESS.

IF YOU DON'T SPEAK ENGLISH, HOW DO YOU ENGAGE LAW ENFORCEMENT TO EVEN REPORT WHAT IS HAPPENING TO YOU?

AND OFTENTIMES WHAT WE'RE HEARING TOO IS THAT LAW ENFORCEMENT OFTENTIMES, THEY DON'T WANT TO TAKE A REPORT.

SO THEY'RE DISCOURAGED FROM FILING A REPORT.

ASIAN-AMERICANS ALSO, 70% OF US ARE IMMIGRANTS.

SO OFTENTIMES PEOPLE DON'T KNOW THEIR RIGHTS.

THEY DON'T EVEN KNOW THEIR RIGHTS TO ASK TO FILE A REPORT.

THIS HAS HAPPENED TO ME, I NEED TO TELL SOMEBODY.

THOSE McNECHANISMS THAT TRIGGERN INTERACTION WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT TO HELP TO HAVE PEOPLE GET SOME JUSTICE, YOU KNOW, THOSE MECHANISMS ARE NOT AVAILABLE AT THIS POINT AND THEY HAVE NOT BEEN SET UP TO RESPOND TO WHAT IS HAPPENING IN OUR COMMUNITY.

NOW, I WANT TO FOCUS ON THE JUST TRAGIC EVENTS THAT HAVE TAKEN PLACE IN THE ATLANTA AREA IN GEORGIA.

AT LEAST AS OF THIS TAPING, THE KILLER HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH EIGHT COUNTS OF MURDER AND SIX OF THE NAMES HAVE BEEN RELEASED.

ESPECIALLY FOR THE NAMES OF THE INDIVIDUALS, WE DO WANT TO FOCUS ESPECIALLY ON THEM.

I WAS WONDERING IF EITHER ONE OF YOU COULD JUST SHARE WITH US JUST TO MAKE SURE THAT THE AUDIENCE FULLY UNDERSTANDS BY HAVING THEIR NAMES, GIVING THEM A SENSE OF HUMANITY, OF WHO IT IS THAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT.

SURE.

I HAVEN'T LISTED THE NAMES ON MY OWN SCREEN.

WHAT IS NOT LOST ON ME IS THEY HAD TO GO TO WORK DURING A PANDEMIC.

THERE'S A LOT OF CONVERSATION ABOUT WHAT KIND OF WORK THEY WERE DOING.

IT DOESN'T MATTER.

IT'S THE FACT THEY HAD TO WORK DURING THE PANDEMIC.

WE DESERVE TO NAME THEM.

THEY'RE PART OF OUR COMMUNITY TOO.

IT IS NOT LOST ON US HOW MUCH PAIN WE FEEL.

BECAUSE LTHEY LOOK LIKE US.

BY THE GRACE OF GOD, IT COULD HAPPEN TO ANY OF US.

GOING OUT, SOMEBODY HAS A BAD DAY AND TAKES OUT A GUN AND MAKES THREE SEPARATE TRIPS TO KILL WOMEN.

IT HAS BEEN BRUTAL OR THE ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY.

I CAN TELL YOU THERE'S A LOT OF CHECKING GOING ON ALL DAY TODAY AND ALL DAY YESTERDAY.

IT IS REALLY HARD TO HOLD IN ALL THE ANGER AND FRUSTRATION.

IT'S REALLY HARD TO HNOT BE ANGY FOR THOSE WOMEN.

THEY WERE DOING WHAT THEY NEEDED TO DO.

THEY WERE GOING TO WORK TO SURVIVE.

THIS IS THE END RESULT.

YOU KNOW, IN THIS COUNTRY WE CAN'T EVEN KEEP EACH OTHER SAFE.

THAT IS A TRAGEDY OF ALL OF THIS.

I JUST WANT TO READ THE NAME THAT HAVE BEEN RELEASED SO FAR.

THEY HAVE BEEN DEHUMANIZED BY THE PRESS RELEASE OF THE SHERIFF'S OFFICE AND WE REALLY APPRECIATE THIS OFFICE.

DELA THOSE ARE THE NAMES THAT HAVE BEEN RELEASED PUBLICLY THAT WERE KILLED.

THE REASON THAT THE HUMANIZATION OF THE VICTIMS IS SO IMPORTANT IS BECAUSE THE KILLER WAS SO HUMANIZED BY THE COMMENTS OF THE SHERIFF.

HE HAD A SEX ADDICTION, HE HAD A BAD DAY.

THE HUMANIZATION OF THIS ACCUSED KILLER WAS THE MOST JAW-DROPPING PART AFTER THE DEATHS OF WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY.

I THINK THAT'S WHAT HAS ON TOP OF EVERYTHING ELSE SO INFURIATED THE ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY.

IT IS ASTOUNDING TO WATCH THAT COVERAGE EARLY IN THE DAY, TO WATCH THAT PREFERENCE AND READ THAT NEWS RELEASE FROM THE CHEROKEE SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT.

JENNA, I'D LIKE TO ADD, WE HAVE SEEN WHAT HAS HAPPENED, HOW THIS IS GOING TO PLAY OUT.

WE'VE SEEN THIS HAPPEN WITH OUR BLACK SIBLINGS.

WHEN THERE HAVE BEEN KILLINGS BY WHITE SUPREMACISTS AND THE VIOLENCE AND THE KILLING AT THE CHURCH, YOU KNOW, THAT IS NOT LOST ON US.

WE REMEMBER THEN HOW HE WENT TO GO GET BURGER KING.

DYLANN ROOF GOT DRIVEN TO BURGER KING AFTER HE WAS ARRESTED, AFTER GUNNING DOWN PEOPLE HAVING A PRAYER MEETING.

HOW THAT WAS SPUN, THAT IS NOT LOST ON US.

WE ARE WATCHING VERY CLOSELY.

WE ARE ANGRY AND WE ARE FURIOUS AND WE ARE NOT GOING TO LET THIS HAPPEN.

I CAN TELL YOU I AM JUST COMING BACK FROM A PRESS CONFERENCE WITH REVEREND SHARPTON.

HE HAS STOOD HIS GROUND TO SAY THIS IS NOT -- THIS HAS HAPPENED IN THE BLACK COMMUNITY.

IT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN IN THE ASIAN COMMUNITY AND WE ARE GOING TO STAND UNITED TOGETHER.

WHAT WE'RE SEEING IS HOW THE PRECEDENT HAS BEEN SET, YOU KNOW AND HOW THE BLACK COMMUNITY HAS BEEN TREATED.

SO WE'RE WATCHING THE EXACT SAME THING HAPPEN IN OUR OWN COMMUNITY.

I'M SURE THAT MUST ADD AN ADDITIONAL LAYER OF CONCERN, TO SAY THE LEAST, CONSIDERING SOME OF THE OUTCOMES THAT WE'VE SEEN HAPPEN TO OR FOR THE BLACK COMMUNITY.

I DO WANT TO TURN THIS BACK TO A LEGAL QUESTION.

CHRIS, IF YOU COULD, THERE'S BEEN ALSO A LOT OF CONCERN OVER THE FACT THIS HAS YET TO BE DESIGNATED AS A HATE CRIME.

NOW, CHRIS, I UNDERSTAND WHILE YOU ARE A MEMBER OF THE BAR IN NEW YORK, I'M NOT SURE HOW FAMILIAR YOU ARE WITH GEORGIA LAW, BUT THERE'S ALSO BEEN SEVERAL ARTICLES TALKING ABOUT THE FACT THAT HATE CRIMES CAN BE INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT TO PROVE AND GET CONVICTIONS FOR.

SO I WAS WONDERING IF YOU COULD TALK ABOUT AT LEAST YOUR UNDERSTANDING FOR NEW YORK STATE WHAT TECHNICALLY, WHAT IS THE LEGAL DEFINITION, WHAT IS THE THRESHOLD THAT NEEDS TO BE MET FOR SOMETHING TO BE DESIGNATED A HATE CRIME AND SECONDLY WHY IS IT SO HARD TO GET CONVICTIONS FOR THEM?

A HATE CRIME FIRST NEEDS A CRIME TO BE COMMITTED.

HERE WE HAVE THE SAD MURDERS OF THESE PEOPLE, SO YOU HAVE A CRIME COMMITTED.

THEN A HATE CRIME ELEMENT IS AN ENHANCEMENT ON TOP OF CRIMES THAT HAVE BEEN COMMITTED.

IN ORDER FOR A HATE CRIME TO BE CHARGED AS ENHANCEMENT, YOU HAVE TO HAVE INTENT, SELECTION, THAT THAT PERSON WAS SELECTED BECAUSE OF THEIR RACE, COLOR OR OTHER CATEGORY.

IT'S REALLY HARD, I THINK, FOR PROSECUTORS BOTH IN NEW YORK AROUNDAND AROUND THE COUNTRY BECAUSE THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND RACE AND ASIAN AMERICANS.

THOUGH ASIAN AMERICANS ARE RACIALIZED AND THEY EXPERIENCE RACISM IT'S DIFFERENT THAN HOW AFRICAN-AMERICANS EXPERIENCE RACISM AND ARE RACIALIZED.

WE HAVE MANY OVERLAPS BUT THERE ARE SOME DIFFERENCES.

IF WE LOOK AT THE CHEROKEE SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT, WHAT WE SEE IN THE PRESS RELEASE IS THEM QUOTING THE KILLER TO SAY THIS IS NOT A HATE CRIME BECAUSE HE TOLD THEM SO, SO WE'RE TAKING HIM FOR HIS WORD.

FROM THE VERY TOP, WE HAVE RACE IS NOT A FACTOR HERE.

WHEN IT COMES TO ASIANS AND WHITES, THERE'S NO RACE.

THEY'RE JUST KILLING THEM.

ASIAN WOMEN HAVE BEEN RACIALIZED AS SEX OBJECTS.

PROSTITUTION WAS COMMON IN THE OLD AMERICAN WEST BECAUSE THEY WERE MOSTLY MEN AND THERE WERE PROSTITUTES OF ALL KINDS.

WHEN ASIAN WOMEN CAME, THEY ALL OF A SUDDEN BECAME THIS HUGE ISSUE.

THEY WERE SEEN AS SOMEHOW SYNONYMOUS WITH PROSTITUTION.

WE ARE DIRECTLY TIED TO THAT CONCEPTION IN WHAT HAPPENED IN ATLANTA.

HE HAD A SEX PROBLEM.

NO.

LIKE, THESE WOMEN DIDN'T EVEN EXIST, LIKE THEY WEREN'T EVEN WORTHY.

THAT WAS JUST SO CHILLING TO SEE THAT EXPRESSED IN A VERY INVISIBLE WAY.

THAT IS HOW ASIAN-AMERICANS EXPERIENCE RACE IN AMERICA, OFTEN IN A VERY INVISIBLE WAY.

ASIAN-AMERICANS HAVE NOT SPENT ENOUGH TIME THINKING ABOUT IT AND LEARNING AND TALKING ING AB IT.

THIS IS WHY THESE OPPORTUNITIES ARE SO IMPORTANT FOR PEOPLE LIKE JO-ANN AND MYSELF TO COME AND SHARE THIS WITH YOU.

JO-ANN, AGAIN, AS AN ASIAN WOMAN, I WOULD LOVE TO GET YOUR THOUGHTS ON WHAT IS SLOWLY BECOMING A NARRATIVE IN THE MEDIA AND THAT IS THE FETIZATION OF AMERICAN WOMEN.

IT'S EITHER THE SUB MIMISSIV ASIAN WOMAN OR THE DRAGON LADY.

IT IS A POWER STRUCTURE THAT SAYS WE WANT TO SPIN YOU IN THIS WAY.

SO WHEN THOSE IMAGES ARE PROJECTED TO US, IT'S IS SUB MISIVMI SUBMISSIVE ASIAN WOMAN.

IF WE DON'T COMPORT TO THAT, WE ARE THE DRAGON LADY AND EVIL TOUGH WOMEN.

IT IS EXACTLY AS CHRIS SAID TOO, THE PROSTITUTION AND THE FETISHIZATION.

THE KILLER COULD HAVE GONE TO ANY MASSAGE, ANY SPA MASSAGE PART PA PARLOR.

HE CHOSE THREE ASIAN SPAS.

IT MAKES IT REALLY HARD TO THINK THIS IS NOT A HATE CRIME.

THERE HASN'T EVEN BEEN AN INVESTIGATION.

I'M NOT REALLY SURE WHY THEY'RE MAKING THAT COMMENT.

WHEN YOU SEEK OUT THREE ASIAN-OWNED, ASIAN EMPLOYEE SPA TO CHOOSE TO TARGET THE WORKERS, IT TELLS ME SOMETHING.

IT TELLS ME IT'S A HATE CRIME AND HE TARGETED US.

WHEN THINGS HAPPEN TO OUR COMMUNITY, OFTEN TIMES IT GETS GLOSSED OTHER.

EXACTLY WHAT WE'RE SEEING FROM THE SHERIFF'S OFFICE AND HOW THEY'RE ALREADY FRAMING IT, WE SEE THIS COMING DOWN AND IT REALLY STINKS BECAUSE THEY'RE ALREADY FRAMING IT AS THIS KID IS GOING TO WALK, BECAUSE IT'S GOING TO BE SOMETHING ELSE.

WE ARE NOT OKAY WITH THIS.

OKAY.

BEFORE WE SORT OF MOVE ONTO A LITTLE BIT MORE OF THE LARGER CONTEXT OF WHAT'S GOING ON, ESPECIALLY HERE IN NEW YORK, I DO WANT TO ASK ONE MORE QUESTION.

THAT IS WHEN A CRIME LIKE THIS OCCURS, THERE ALSO TENDS TO BE INSTANCES OF PEOPLE WANTING TO PERHAPS SAY, WELL, NOT QUITE OR NOT REALLY OR THIS WASN'T REALLY A HATE CRIME BECAUSE OF X, Y AND Z.

I'M JUST WONDERING WHAT ARE YOUR CONCERNS ABOUT THE PUSHBACK YOU'RE HEARING FROM PEOPLE FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE WHO ARE HESITANT TO SAY, YES, THIS IS A HATE CRIME IN WAYS THAT OTHER CRIMES ARE EASILY IDENTIFIED AS A HATE CRIME.

YOU KNOW, I FELT LIKE ASIAN-AMERICANS START BEHIND THE EIGHT BALL.

LIKE, YOU'VE GOOD TO PROVE IT'S ABOUT RACE, BECAUSE WE'RE GOING TO START FROM THE STARTING POINT THAT IT'S NOT EVEN THOUGH ASIAN-AMERICANS ARE A MINORITY, THEY'RE A VISIBLE MINORITY IN ATLANTA.

SO WE'RE WORKING FROM THIS DEFAULT THAT RACE DOESN'T EXIST WITH US, RIGHT?

HONORARY WHITES.

ASIANS ARE NOT WHITE, BUT THEY'RE BASICALLY WHITE.

WE'VE GOT TO START FROM THAT, LIKE YOU'VE GOT TO PROVE THIS WAS DISCRIMINATION, BECAUSE I'M NOT REALLY SURE YOU GUYS EXPERIENCE DISCRIMINATION.

IMPLICIT IN ALL OF THAT THAT WE SAW YESTERDAY, I FELT ALL OF THAT.

IT WAS DEEPLY, DEEPLY DISTURBING.

THAT'S WHAT ASIAN AMERICANS HAVE TO FIGHT AGAINST.

MANY ASIAN AMERICANS HAVE NOT THOUGHT LONG AND DEEP ABOUT RACE BECAUSE THEY'VE BEEN ABLE TO GET BY IN THEIR LIVES WITHOUT HAVING TO ENGAGE IN THAT WAY.

THEY'VE SKATED BY IN MANY WAYS.

THIS IS A MOMENT OF A RECKONING, I THINK, FOR MANY ASIAN AMERICANS.

WE WANT THAT RECKONING TO BE SORT OF IN LOVE, BUT THEY DO NEED TO DEAL WITH IT.

THEY NEED TO SEE HOW THIS PLAYS WITHIN THE LARGER EXPERIENCE OF RACE STARTING WITH AFRICAN-AMERICANS AND NATIVE PEOPLES IN THIS COUNTRY THAT THERE IS PARALLELS, THAT WE HAVE TO UNDERSTAND WHERE WE'RE COMING FROM.

I THINK IF THIS MOMENT LEADS TO THAT, THIS IS THE SILVER LINING OF THIS TRAGIC MOMENT.

JO-ANN, I'D LIKE TO POSE THE QUESTION TO YOU, BECAUSE I SPOKE ABOUT THIS WITH CHRIS BEFORE ON THE SHOW.

AND THAT IS THE MODEL MINORITY MYTH AND THAT PERHAPS THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO MIGHT SAY THAT'S A GREAT STEREO TYPE TO HAVE, BUT ACTUALLY A LOT OF ASIAN AMERICANS SAY IT'S INCREDIBLY DAMAGING AND HARMFUL.

I'D LIKE TO GET YOUR THOUGHTS ON WHY THAT PERSISTS AND WHAT IMPACT IT HAS NOT JUST ON THE ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY, BUT ON THE REST OF AMERICAN SOCIETY AND HOW ASIAN-AMERICANS ARE VIEWED.

THAT IS A GREAT QUESTION AND I ASK THAT OFTEN.

THAT MODEL MINORITY MYTH IS EXTREMELY OFFENSIVE, TOXIC AND DANGEROUS.

ASIAN-AMERICANS WERE FLATTERED BY THAT.

PEOPLE RECOGNIZE THAT.

I THINK IT'S BOLOGNA.

THAT WAS CREATED AS A WEDGE THAT WAS LABELED A FIX TO THE ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY SO IT WOULD BE USED AS A WEDGE TO DEPRIVE OTHER COMMUNITIES OF COLOR OF RIGHTS, OF PROGRAMS, OF FUNDING.

WE SHOULD NOT BE FLATTERED BY THAT.

WE SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A TOOL TO WIDEN THE RACISM GAPS.

WE DON'T DO WELL.

SOME OF THE POOREST NEW YORKERS ARE ASIAN-AMERICANS.

WE ARE IMMIGRANTS.

WE HAVE SOME OF THE HIGHEST RATES OF ENGLISH PROFICIENCIES.

OUR SENIORS ARE THE POOREST.

WE'RE ONE OF THE FASTEST-GROWING POPULATIONS.

WE HAVE THE HIGHEST RATES OF DEPORTATION.

NEVER HAVE I REALIZED HOW INVISIBLE OUR COMMUNITY IS THAN AT THIS POINT.

AT THE ASIAN AMERICAN FEDERATION WE HAVE PUMPED OUT REPORT AFTER REPORT DEMONSTRATING WHY ALL OF THESE RACIST TROPES ASSIGNED TO US, IT'S WRONG AND WE'RE USING STATISTICS AND FACTS.

YET THEY ARE STILL AFFIXED TO US.

THE OTHER THING ABOUT WHY THE MODEL MINORITY MYTH IS REALLY HARMFUL TO OUR COMMUNITY IS BECAUSE IT DENIES US OF OUR OWN HUMANITY AND THE TIMES THAT WE ALSO NEED HELP.

IF YOU'RE LIVING IN POVERTY, YOU'RE NOT GOING TO GET UP BY YOURSELF WITHOUT SOME HELP.

DURING COVID ALL OF THE HIGH UNEMPLOYMENT AND SOME OF RESIDENTS, OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS DIDN'T GET TO APPLY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT BECAUSE THEY DON'T EVEN HAVE THE CAPACITY TO DO THINGS LIKE THAT.

WHEN WE SAY, OH, ASIANS ARE DOING WELL, WE DON'T HAVE TO DO ANYTHING FOR YOU BECAUSE YOU'RE GOING TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO SOLVE THE PROBLEMS YOURSELVES, BUT WE'RE ALSO CHALLENGED BY BEYOND THE MODEL MINORITY MYTH, THE PERPETUAL FOREIGNER.

WE'RE ALWAYS ASKED THE QUESTION, WHERE ARE YOU FROM, BECAUSE YOUR ENGLISH IS REALLY GOOD.

MYSELF, I'M AN IMMIGRANT, SO I SAY THANK YOU.

BUT THERE ARE MANY, MANY ASIAN AMERICANS WHO HAVE BEEN HERE MANY GENERATIONS, MY FRIENDS WHO HAVE BEEN HERE FOUR OR FIVE GENERATIONS, THEY DON'T SPEAK THEIR NATIVE LANGUAGE OF THEIR GREAT GREAT GRANDPARENTS.

BUT THEY'RE ASKED CONSTANTLY.

BECAUSE OF THE WAY WE LOOK, THERE'S AN IMMEDIATE ASSUMPTION WE'RE NOT AMERICANS.

THAT CONTIS CONTRIBUTING TO THE DEHUMANIZATION OF ASIAN AMERICANS.

WE ARE NOT AMERICANS, SO THEREFORE IT'S OKAY TO HARM US.

I COULDN'T HAVE SAID THAT BETTER.

THIS IS WHAT I THINK WHEN I HEAR ABOUT THE MODEL MINORITY.

FIRST IT'S AN INSULT TO AFRICAN-AMERICANS AND LATINOS.

YOU CAN'T DO THIS, YOU'RE NOT GOOD STUDENTS.

WE KNOW THAT TO BE UNTRUE.

I FIGHT THIS OPPRESSIVE THING THAT HAPPENS ABOVE US.

TO ASIAN-AMERICANS I SAY ABOUT THE MODEL MINORITY, WE WILL NOT BE USED, WE WILL NOT BE LABELED.

DO NOT ACCEPT THIS.

WE ARE NOT YOUR PETS.

WE DO NOT HAPPILY ACCEPT THIS LABEL TO TELL US WE'RE GOOD.

WE DON'T NEED ANYONE TO TELL US WHAT WE ARE.

WE CAN BE BAD, WE CAN BE GOOD.

WE'RE HUMANS LIKE EVERYONE ELSE.

A GOOD STEREO TYPE IS SOMETHING THAT THE POWER STRUCTURE HAS PLACED ON YOU AS A SHACKLE.

IF YOU ARE HAPPY TO BE THAT SHACKLE BECAUSE THAT SHACKLE HAS A GOLD STAR ON IT, THEN YOU ARE ENSLAVED IN YOUR MIND.

THAT IS THE BASIS WHY THE MODEL MINORITY SHOULD BE COMPLETELY DISREGARDED, BECAUSE IT IS ABOUT LABELING BY THE POWER STRUCTURE THAT YOU HAPPY ACCEPT, TO BE PLACED INTO A POWER STRUCTURE THAT OPPRESSES OTHERS AND IN THE END OPPRESSES YOU EVEN THOUGH IT'S A, QUOTE, UNQUOTE GOOD STEREO TYPE.

WE DON'T HAVE ANYWHERE NEAR THE TIME WE SHOULD BE GIVING THIS.

AS BOTH OF YOU HAVE MENTIONED, THERE HAVE BEEN INCREASES IN CRIMES AGAINST ASIANS IN AMERICA.

I BELIEVE IT'S LIKE A 900% INCREASE OF REPORTED CRIMES HERE IN NEW YORK CITY.

WHAT ARE YOU CONCERNS ABOUT THE RIPPLE EFFECTS OF NOT JUST THE CRIME THAT TOOK PLACE IN ATLANTA, BUT THE WAY AUTHORITIES ARE TALKING ABOUT IT.

WHAT ARE YOUR CONCERNS FOR THE RIPPLE EFFECTS HERE IN NEW YORK WHERE TENSIONS ARE ALREADY SO HIGH FOR NUMEROUS REASONS?

CHRIS, I'LL GO RIGHT BACK TO YOU.

ALL THE REPORTS OF THE HARASSMENT, PEOPLE SPITTING AT PEOPLE, THOSE ARE INCIDENTS I'VE HEARD DIRECTLY.

2.3 TIMES MORE LIKELY TO BE DIRECTED AT ASIAN-AMERICAN WOMEN.

THEY WERE SIGNS POINTING TO WHAT HAPPENED IN ATLANTA.

THE POLICE FOR THE MOST PART DID NOTHING ABOUT THOSE INCIDENTS IF THEY WERE INFORMED.

THOSE THINGS HAVE TO STOP.

JO-ANN AND I WROTE THAT OP-ED IN DAILY NEWS ALMOST A YEAR AGO BECAUSE WE WANTED TO STOP THAT.

WE KNEW IT WAS COMING AND WE DIDN'T WANT IT TO HAPPEN.

BUT IT'S HAPPENED.

WE DON'T WANT IT TO HAPPEN AGAIN.

LIVES ARE BEING LOST.

IT STARTED WITH THESE LITTLE THINGS WHICH NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED BY THE SYSTEM THAT WE HAVE RIGHT NOW.

JO-ANN, I'LL GIVE YOU FINAL WORD.

WE HAVE ABOUT A MINUTE LEFT.

SURE.

I THINK THE RIPPLE EFFECT THAT WAS DAMAGING IS THAT WE'RE GOING TO BE SO DESENSITIZED TO ALL OF THIS HAPPENING, PEOPLE ARE GOING TO START TO IGNORE IT AND SAY, OH, THAT HATE CRIME, ARE YOU SURE?

YEAH, WE ALREADY HEARD ABOUT THAT.

SO PEOPLE ARE GOING TO GLOSS OVER WHAT'S HAPPENING.

THAT IS THE FEAR FOR ME FROM THE MAINSTREAM COMMUNITY AND FROM OUR OWN COMMUNITY THAT PEOPLE ARE GOING TO START TO BE REALLY PARANOID AND LOSE TRUST IN THEIR FELLOW NEW YORKERS.

PEOPLE ARE GOING TO SHELTER IN PLACE.

PEOPLE ARE REALLY GOING TO HUNKER DOWN WITH THAT US AGAINST THEM MENTALITY AND NOT BEING ABLE TO SEE THEIR FELLOW NEW YORKERS AS SOMEBODY WHO STANDS IN SOLIDARITY WITH THEM.

THAT IS MY BIGGEST FEAR, IS THE FACT THAT WE DON'T SEE THE H HUMANITY IN EACH OTHER.

UNFORTUNATELY WE ARE OUT OF TIME.

SO THANK YOU TO CHRIS KWOK, BOARD MEMBER FOR THE ASIAN-AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK.

AND THANK YOU JO-ANN YOO, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE ASIAN-AMERICAN FEDERATION.

I REALLY APPRECIATE BOTH OF YOU TAKING TIME TO COME ON THE SHOW AND, AGAIN, HELP CONTEXTUALIZE HOW AN INCIDENT IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA, IS ACTUALLY PART OF A MUCH LARGER PROBLEM.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

ABSOLUTELY.

IF YOU HAVE WITNESSED OR BELIEVE YOU HAVE BEEN VICTIM OF A BIAS OR HATE CRIME, THESE GROUPS ARE SPECIFICALLY TRACKING CRIMES AGAINST ASIANS.

THE ASIAN AMERICAN FEDERATION AT AAFEDERATION.ORG.

S STOPAAPI.ORG AND ASIAN AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK AT AABANY.ORG.

OR YOU CAN CALL THE NYPD AND LOG A COMPLAINT WITH THEIR HATE CRIMES DIVISION.

ALL OF THESE WEBSITES CAN BE FOUND AT METROFOCUS.ORG.

'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY -- SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, SYLVIA A. AND SIMON B. POYTA PROGRAMING ENDOWMENT TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM.

THE PETER G. PETERSON AND JOAN GANZ COONEY FUND.

BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, THE AMBROSE MONELL FOUNDATION AND BY -- JANET PRINDLE SEIDLER, JODY AND JOHN ARNHOLD, CHERYL AND PHILIP LITTLE MILSTEIN FAMILY, JUDY AND JOSH WESTON, AND THE DR. ROBERT C. AND TINA SOHN FOUNDATION, THE JPB FOUNDATION.

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