My heart has been so unbelievably heavy upon hearing the news of the Atlanta murders and the rise in violence towards Asian-Americans in our country. This past year alone has demonstrated how the government has perpetuated anti-Asian sentiment for generations. Being half-Asian (with a fully Filipino mother and grandmother) and immigrating from the Philippines when I was very young has given me the beautiful opportunity to grow up with Asian culture present in my life. It pains me to think that any one of those people killed could’ve easily been members of my own family, people I know and love and admire. It breaks my heart to see people continuously use racism to destroy lives, hospitalize innocent elders and tear families apart.
The lives of these people mattered. Please take a moment of silence to know their names: Soon Chung Park, Hyun Jung Grant, Suncha Kim, Yong Ae Yue, Delaina Ashley Yaun, Paul Andre Michels, Xiaojie Tan, and Daoyou Feng.
This violence and hatred is sickening. I am so appreciative of my roots, of my cultural identity, and where I come from. Although the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) community is diverse and multi-dimensional, we celebrate our differences and recognize that every emotion that a member from the AAPI community has faced this past month is completely and perfectly valid.
We’ve all seen #StopAsianHate. But it’s not just about stopping Asian hate. It’s about getting to the root of the issue. It’s about stopping microaggressions and the hyperfetishization of Asian women. It’s about celebrating Asian joy, uplifting Asian voices and educating our communities. It’s about holding ourselves, our institutions and the government accountable, and destroying the harmful stereotypes of the model minority myth. No one should ever have to live in fear just for being themselves.
With that being said, we here at Her Campus SLU stand in solidarity with the AAPI community, and offer the opportunity for any AAPI individual to write an article that we will publish for you. We recognize that this is an extremely difficult and painful time, and want to ensure that you have an outlet to express yourself and let your stories be heard. Her Campus is devoted to celebrating your voices because you matter and your stories do, too.
Please let us know how we can further support you.
President of Her Campus at SLU, 2021-22
Anyone looking to express themselves during this time may forward a piece to Editor-In-Chief, Lexi Kayser, for publication. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.