Covid-19 Leads to Discrimination


Yun Wai, Staff

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background or his religion. People learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” (Nelson Mandela)

Imagine people blaming you and looking at you differently because they think your ethnicity is to blame for a worldwide pandemic. We should be fearing Coronavirus, but Asian people also have to worry about verbal harassment, shunning physical assault, and more.

With the outbreak of the pandemic that has killed many all around the world, people have decided to attack the Asian communities because of their ethnicity and looks. A 31-year-old Tracy Wen Liu came from East Asia to America so she could adapt to the American culture. According to BBC News, Ms. Liu can’t become a part of American society because of her looks or where she was born. She states that she “could never become one of them,” and she has purchased her first gun after her Korean friend was pushed and yelled at a supermarket for being Asian and wearing a mask. Ms. Liu hopes that “the world never comes to a day when we have to use [the gun]” that she has purchased because “that would be a very, very bad situation, something [she] doesn’t even want to imagine.”

May 23, 2020, around 6:30 p.m., the Seattle Police Department received a report of a white male in his 30s, approximately 5’10, muscular build with dark hair, yelling at a female Asian guest who was just trying to leave. According to King5, the same man was seen again at a restaurant yelling, “racially biased remarks based on Asian heritage.” Employees said it was not his first day at the restaurant and he has been there the day before, around the same time. Chief Best of Seattle Police Department confirms that “when we first came under this Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve had nine incidents that we tracked that were targeted toward the Asian community.” The suspect’s description in all the cases seems to be the same man.

May 16, 2020, around 4:15, a couple walking on the sidewalk was suddenly attacked by getting shoved, and spat on by the suspect who told the couple, “it’s all your fault.” The male victim got his glasses and his mask knocked off from the shove. Chief Best described the situation as “very egregious.”

Yes, Covid-19 did start from China. Yes, Asians may not be able to “adapt” to American society because of their looks or because of where they were born. However, in 6-weeks time, there have been over 1,700 reports of coronavirus discrimination from Asian Americans across the country, according to the California-based Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council.  A disease is a disease, but the disease does not and should not mean that a person has a connection to it because of their ethnicity.