Tri-Valley Haven Stands Against Violence Towards Asian Americans & People of Asian Decent
To all Asian and Asian American individuals: Tri-Valley Haven stands in solidarity with you! We condemn all forms of violence, domestic abuse, sexual assault, discrimination, racism, harassment and xenophobia. We’re grieved by the escalating violence towards persons of Asian descent. The at least 3,795 reported incidents of hate against Asian American and Pacific Islanders since the COVID-19 pandemic began, recorded by Stop AAPI Hate, are deplorable and unacceptable. Last Tuesday, a white gunman fatally shot eight people, including six Asian women, in a series of killings at three massage parlors in the Atlanta area. The shootings are the latest in a series of violent incidents against Asian Americans across the country, including the January assault and killing of 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee in San Francisco.
It's not a coincidence that six of the eight victims last week were Asian women. The suspect's remarks were rooted in a history of misogyny and stereotypes. Asian American women are often fetishized and hypersexualized; seen as quiet and submissive. These perceptions of Asian American women as hypersexual and exotic can be traced back centuries. It reduces Asian women to an inaccurate stereotype, a commodity, and contributes to the increasing rates of violence.
This racial discrimination needs to be acknowledged and stopped! We must call upon our most courageous selves to fight against harmful stereotypes and stand up for what is right. We believe that shared equity for all is the path to peace. Without oppression, no one person or group of people will be regarded as “less’ than another. In sexual assault and family violence services we know we must sometimes be the voice for survivors who are unable to speak out. Their risks may be lethal.
How can we reach a world without violence when we look at what is happening today? We have to keep the faith in change and in our ability to make it happen. It will take all of us. What can we do? Not everyone can protest. We are in the midst of a COVID pandemic. We can speak up. If you see something, say something or do something. Check in with your Asian American peers. Listen to Asian American women and elders, and center their experiences. Some of us can contribute to organizations that reflect our values. Support organizations that are advocating for justice in the Asian American community. Educate ourselves. Consider taking a training about irradiating hate or on implicit bias. Let’s do what we can every day. Learn about the history of Asian American discrimination. Be mindful of the fact that we have power in this situation; we have a voice. Some of us enjoy privilege. Let’s use it thoughtfully to be allies of and instruments for change.
“Together we build a world without violence.” The more we commit to learn about and respect each other, the closer we get to a world without violence.
Ann King, Executive Director & Christine Dillman, Director of Development