The coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) has been a hot topic these days. Especially when every news outlet and everyone on social media has been talking about it and taking precautions. Everyone is making sure they are taking all of the steps to make sure they are healthy. Popular events such as the St. Patrick’s Day parade and Coachella have been cancelled or postponed in order to ensure everyones’ safety. When you go to the grocery stores, certain products such as hand sanitizer and toilet paper may be hard to find since people keep buying them out. It’s normal to be concerned but because of the coronavirus, the racism against Asians rose.
The coronavirus causes diseases in animals and has jumped to humans. This virus came from a “wet market” in Wuhan, China. “Wet Markets” sell dead and live animals including fish and birds. Since this virus came from a wet market in China, some people automatically assume all Asians are the same and have eaten certain animals that contain the coronavirus and have spreaded it to other people. For example, Lil Reese tweeted on March 11th, “Chinese people nasty asl man got the whole world f- up.”
An article, “Backlash against Asians could hinder efforts to contain coronavirus, expert says” written by ABC News explained the racism he faced while waiting for his wife to finish her doctor’s appointment in Filderstadt, Germany. Frank Karinda took his 1-year old son for a walk around the hospital. This was around the time the fear of the coronavirus was happening. There was a man who kept looking at his son and said in German, “He looks a little bit like corona.” Karinda was stunned and went to see his wife, Hawon Jung, who went to rant on Twitter when she heard about the incident.
“Coronavirus-related racism is real. When I visited a hospital near Stuttgart due to a minor injury, a middle-aged German guy saw my 12-month-old child toddling around & said “Der hat einen Corona Einschlag! (He looks a bit like Corona!)” I don’t think he was talking about beer.” Jung tweeted.
Natalie Molina, professor of American studies and ethnicity at University of Southern California’s Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Science told NBC News, “”We’re still more worried about someone looking Asian coughing into their shirt” than about understanding best practices to stop the spread, according to Molina.”
Another incident regarding racism happened in New York City as stated in an article, “Asian Woman Attacked in New York City In Possible Coronavirus Bias Crime,” written by NBC News. A 23-year old Asian woman was punched in the face by a woman who made anti-Asian slurs before leaving the scene. These women knew each other, attended the same school and had previous altercations.
“I am disgusted to hear that a woman of Asian descent was physically assaulted in Manhattan on Tuesday — an attack apparently motivated by the bigoted notion that an Asian person is more likely to carry or transmit the novel coronavirus,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
The following example may not be a hate crime linked to the Corona Virus but it is still a hate crime against Asians. There’s a video of a 68-year old elderly man attacked and robbed in San Francisco. A group of bystanders mocked, attacked, and stole his cart of recyclables. The video showed a black man wheeling the elderly man’s cart away and when the elderly man tried to run after the cart, the man turned back and swung a broomstick at his head. There was a group of people standing around, pulling out their phones while taunting the elderly man. At one point in the video, someone shouted, “I hate Asians.” Later on, the elderly man was weeping.
CDC has steps people should take to keep safe and healthy during the outbreak. A couple of the steps include, using good hygiene, don’t shake hands with people, be careful if you’re going to meetings and traveling and stay home if you’re sick.
Red Cross also has precautions everyone should take such as using a face mask only if you’re sick, avoid close contact with people, avoid touching your eyes, noise, and mouth if your hands are unwashed, and washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially in a public place.
If you want to stay healthy and be safe during the corona virus outbreak, it’s better to band together and help one another instead of wondering if all Asians you come in contact with will infect you with the virus. Racism never solves anything, it only releases people’s true colors. We should all learn to love each other and help keep each other safe.
Overachiever Magazine was started by Rehana Paul in October of 2018 to give a platform to all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities.
Our name is poking fun at the stereotype that all Asians are overachievers, especially Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. It’s also in recognition of all of us who have had no choice but to be overachievers: managing societal expectations, family obligations, and educational opportunities, all while fighting the patriarchy.
We have grown since then, putting out bimonthly issues (we are contributor powered: apply to write for our next one!), and weekly reviews of culture, and news that is important to us.
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We do not claim to speak for all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. We are just here to give them a place to speak for themselves.