Activists from New York and the California Bay Area have come out to protest against “white supremacy” and anti-Asian sentiment in response to an incident late last month where an African-American man violently assaulted an elderly Thai man, leading to the man’s death.
The attack occurred in late January in San Francisco’s Anza Vista neighborhood, where the alleged 19-year-old assailant rammed into 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee, a native of Thailand who lived in San Francisco with his family.
Vicha was rushed to hospital where he succumbed to his injuries two days later.
A graphic security camera footage of the attack shows a man slamming into the 84-year-old with his body in an apparently unprovoked attack that the victim’s family believes is racially motivated, local Fox-affiliate KTVU reported.
— Evan Sernoffsky (@EvanSernoffsky) February 1, 2021
Over the weekend, a group of several hundred protesters in New York marched to protest the recent attacks and robberies targeting members of the Asian-American community in California, particularly the elderly.
One recent incident in Oakland Chinatown captured on video showed an African-American man violently pushing a 91-year-old Asian man to the ground. The attack appeared unprovoked.
According to local reporters, there have recently been more than 20 incidents in California targeting Asian Americans.
WARNING: this video is hard to watch. Another shocking attack in Oakland’s Chinatown. 8th and Harrison Streets. Outside the Asian Resource Center.
— Dion Lim (@DionLimTV) February 4, 2021
Protesters in New York carried signs and wore T-shirts with the wording “Black-Asian unity,” according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
“Asian Americans save lives as your doctors, nurses, grocers, farmers and teachers — we are not the enemy,” one sign read.
Another said: “We stand with our neighbors — end white supremacy.”
Several hundred people from the Washington Square Park “Unite Against White Nationalism” rally are now marching through Chelsea.
This protest is in response to anti-Asian/AAPI violence happening in New York and across the country. pic.twitter.com/Qy3kG3tRiK
— NYC Protest Updates (@protest_nyc) February 20, 2021
The attacks also drew criticism from Democratic members of Congress, some of whom directly blamed former President Donald Trump.
“We warned that spreading xenophobia would put lives at risk. But our pleas and the guidance from experts were ignored,” said Democratic California Rep. Judy Chu added. “Donald Trump and Republicans doubled down on using slurs like ‘Wuhan virus,’ ‘China plague’ and ‘Kung flu.’ And that tactic succeeded in promoting the stigma that directed people’s anger at Asian Americans. What started as dirty looks and verbal assaults has escalated to physical attacks and violence against innocent Asian Americans.”
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Author: Damjan Tutarkov
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