Condemning Anti-Asian Racism and Violence Against Women
March 19, 2021
With heavy hearts, Central California Asian Pacific Women (CCAPW) mourns the lives of the eight victims, including six Asian and Asian American women, murdered Tuesday in Georgia. We are devastated by the pain vibrating through our communities across the nation. We send strength and love to their families and communities, and everyone who is hurting right now. Each of the women, whose lives were senselessly and brutally taken by anti-Asian violence, were individuals with hopes, struggles and dreams. We also send strength, love, and support to all Asians and Asian Americans who might feel targeted, scared, sad, and angry, for their families, friends, communities, and themselves.
We recognize, denounce, and strongly condemn the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes, nearly 3,800 incidents reported, and 68% of them targeting women. We also acknowledge many more incidents of anti-Asian violence and harassment have gone unreported. The recent rise in anti-Asian incidents that have permeated our country over the past year is not new, and has a deep-seated history in U.S. imperial culture, white supremacy, anti-immigrant rhetoric. It is tied to violence embedded in xenophobia, racism, and sexism, among other discriminatory factors. Although authorities deny the mass killing was racially motivated, the latest violence also demands that we account for the longstanding patterns of the exploitation and hypersexualization of Asian and Asian American women, who have been particularly vulnerable to gendered racial violence and racialized sexual violence. We also acknowledge the specific vulnerabilities of Asian and Asian Americans who are marginalized: Asian women, poor immigrants and the undocumented, sex workers, massage workers, and others in criminalized industries. It is unacceptable that the lives of Asian women can be explained away as someone “having a bad day”
We support the national efforts of the Stop AAPI Hate organization, and ask our communities to stand united and to report any incidents that threaten the well-being and safety of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities (AAPI) to the Stop AAPI Hate website, and to other community organizations working to act against anti-Asian violence. Additional organizations where AAPI community members can report incidents or seek support include: Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Asian American Feminist Collective, Asian Pacific Environmental Network, Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Chinatown Community for Equitable Development, South Asian Americans Leading Together, Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund, and Empowered Pacific Islander Communities. We encourage everyone to check on one another and be aware of their surroundings during this time and into the future.
As we remember the lives taken on March 16, 2021, we must also remember that racial and gender violence is deeply woven in our educational, political and economic structures. Together, CCAPW calls upon our allies, community organizations and leaders to not only condemn the acts of violence against Asians and Asian Americans, but also the pervasive discrimination and stereotyping that has far too long harmed Asian American Pacific Islander lives. As members of the community, CCAPW commits ourselves to practicing solidarity, building coalitions, and deepening relations with other communities of color and groups impacted by state-sponsored and gender-based violence. We ask that you stand with us in solidarity to denounce white supremacy and gender-based violence.