Though anti-Asian sentiment is sadly not a new phenomenon in the U.S., we have seen an abhorrent rise in crimes and hateful actions against Asian Americans over the past year.
Crimes targeting AAPI individuals rose by almost 150% in 2020 throughout the U.S. Nonprofit social organization Stop AAPI Hate disclosed that it has received around 3,800 reports of anti-Asian hate incidents around the country since the start of the pandemic, 59 of which happened in Florida. And these numbers do not even cover every incident that occurred, as many are not charged as hate crimes or are simply underreported. APPI-owned businesses have also been facing a harsher crunch during the ongoing pandemic.
Just last week, a man riding a Miami-Dade bus shouted anti-Asian slurs to a Miami resident of Chinese descent after she politely asked him to wear a mask while riding public transport and he refused. Nobody on the bus stood up to defend her.
It is clear we must all do more to condemn violence, uplift Asian voices, and fiscally support marginalized communities in our own backyard. Here are 4 ways to start doing your part to help combat anti-Asian racism and create a more equitable country and world.
1. Support local AAPI-owned businesses in your neighborhood
As previously mentioned, Asian-owned businesses have been some of the hardest hit in the pandemic due to racist rhetoric concerning the novel coronavirus. Help your local businesses stay afloat by supporting them as much as possible.
There are plenty of AAPI-owned restaurants in Miami to order in from such as Tropical Chinese and Lan Pan-Asian Cafe, while shopping at some of Miami’s Asian Markets is such as the Wing Fa Asian Supermarket in Kendall and the Kimchi Mart in Palmetto Bay, is also a great way of supporting the local Asian communities.
2. Contribute to local and national organizations helping out Asian communities
If you are able, monetary donations to organizations supporting Asian communities in Miami (and across the U.S.) can have a great impact. These organizations are on the ground, knowing first-hand what is most needed and where to direct resources so they can be most helpful to the communities they are serving. Here are some ideas:
3. Educate yourself
To understand and change the present, we must reflect on and acknowledge the past, and educating ourselves on the history of racism against Asian people in America can help us come to the issues in a more well-rounded fashion and inform our actions today. Research the history of the model minority myth, the 1871 Chinese massacre, the 1886 hearing of Yick Wo vs. Hopkins, and others. Find informative articles here and here.
4. Stand up to discrimination
Of course, one of the most tangible things we can do is to stand up against discrimination when we witness it, whether it be blatant acts or casual offensive comments. If you do witness an act of hate, it is important to report it. You can also report an AAPI hate incident through Stop AAPI Hate also has created its own reporting database of hateful incidents against Asian-Americans.
[Featured image: @Patrick T. FALLON / AFP]