Racially motivated violence against Asian-Americans is on the rise. The NYPD reported a 1,900% increase of anti-Asian hate crimes in New York City last year, with 20 incidents in the first half of 2020 alone, as opposed to only one in 2019. Additionally, the UN detailed in August that 1,800 racist incidents against Asian-Americans were reported over an eight-week period from March to May 2020 in the United States. Former President Trump and the GOP's insistence on referring to COVID-19 as the "Chinese virus" threw fuel on the fire, inspiring many dangerous attacks.
An article in The Cut on Monday highlighted the violence that has continued into 2021, with several elderly Asian Americans being the victims of vicious hate crimes in recent days: "An 84-year-old Thai American man, Vicha Ratanapakdee, was killed in an unprovoked attack in San Francisco; a 64-year-old Vietnamese American woman was assaulted in broad daylight in San Jose and robbed of $1,000 in cash she had taken out for the upcoming Lunar New Year celebration; and in New York, Noel Quintana, 61, a Filipino American was slashed in the face with a box-cutter while riding the subway."
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Actress Olivia Munn, who is half Chinese, took to Instagram to share her grief over this violent trend and to entreat her followers to pay attention to the violence that is being committed on American soil. "Over the past few days I've found myself at a loss for words at the rise of anti-Asian hate crimes," Munn wrote. "The racist, verbal and physical assaults have left my community fearful to step outside. These hate crimes have spiked since Covid and continue to increase even though we ask for help, even though we ask our fellow Americans to be outraged for us, even though we ask for more mainstream media coverage."
Munn continued, sharing information about the most recent violence committed against Asian Americans. "Hate crimes against Asian Americans have become so bad that in just the past week a 91-year-old Asian American man was attacked from behind as he walked down the street in Oakland, an 84-year-old Thai American was murdered in San Francisco, a 64-year-old Vietnamese American woman was assaulted in San Jose and a Filipino American man was slashed in the face in Manhattan," she recounted.
Closing out her post, Munn asked that her followers pay attention to these incidents and not let them be swept under the rug. "To simply exist as a minority in this country is seen as a protest to some," she explained. "We need help amplifying the outrage. We need help to feel safe in our country. We need help to be safe in our country." Munn also tagged several informative Instagram accounts in the post so that her followers can do their research before signing off as a "Proud Asian America."