March 18, 2021
Dear Berkeley City College Community,
On the evening of Tuesday, March 16, 2021, eight people were killed in an act of murderous violence in Atlanta, Georgia. This senseless act of violence claimed the lives of six Asian women. While the motives behind these killings may not be primarily identified as specifically race motivated, the impact on the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community is deep because these acts of violence are not new in the AAPI community. With hope on the horizon, the dark clouds of racism and hate loom. Since the pandemic’s beginning, hurtful words and deadly physical attacks have targeted the AAPI community. From San Francisco, Oakland, New York and now the deadly shootings in Atlanta, these attacks serve as a painful reminder of the unresolved conversations around racism in America.
Our elders have been targeted, and businesses and places of worship have been desecrated. Our students have shared stories of bullying, racial slurs, and physical violence. The Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino reports that hate crimes against Asian Americans in the largest 16 U.S. cities spiked by nearly 150 percent in 2020. The Stop AAPI Hate National Report includes how 3,800 anti-Asian racist incidents, mostly against women include:
Types of Discrimination
• Verbal harassment (68.1%)
• Physical assault (11.1%)
• Chinese are the largest ethnic group (42.2%) that report experiencing hate,
followed by Koreans (14.8%), Vietnamese (8.5%), and Filipinos (7.9%).
• Incident reports come from all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
• Businesses are the primary site of discrimination (35.4%), followed by public streets (25.3%), and public parks (9.8%). Online incidents account for 10.8% of the total incidents.
With these types of discrimination on the rise, the Pew Research Center Survey highlights that
three in ten Asians (31%) report having experienced racial slurs or racist jokes since the beginning of the pandemic. These forms of aggression, hate, and violence are deplorable and not welcomed in our BCC community.
Berkeley City College firmly stands against all hate, racism, discrimination, and violence against any group and will not tolerate it in any form. We stand in solidarity with our AAPI colleagues and community to strongly condemn such acts.
The attached Stop AAPI Hate flyer provides information for a safe space to find community, healing, and support. Please join tomorrow, March 19th from 12:00 – 1:00pm.