A statement from Dean Bridget Long addressing the hate and racism aimed at the Asian American Pacific Islander community
March 17, 2021
To the HGSE Community,
Yet again, we are faced by an attack that appears to be motivated by hate. As many of you know, eight people, including six Asian women, were shot dead at three Atlanta locations on Tuesday. This follows months of violence directed at the Asian American community — during the first two months of 2021 alone, there were over 500 reported anti-Asian hate incidents in the United States. I know many of us feel grief, horror, and anger at this event, and there is also a weariness. Again and again, we must confront the hateful actions taken against people for no other reason than some aspect of their identity, and the Asian-American community has been a constant target.
I am writing you now to add my voice to the chorus of those who stand opposed to these acts of violence and to express my heartfelt solidarity with the Asian American Pacific Islander community. The harm and trauma being afflicted on our students, colleagues, friends, loved ones, and people around the world is intolerable and being fostered by racism and bigotry that must not go unchecked.
To those feeling this latest act of hate on a personal level, I send you comfort and the encouragement to lean on the HGSE Community. I also ask everyone to take special care to reach out to others they suspect may be hurting. We must also do more to take action. With that in mind, I have attached a list of resources and activities compiled by the HGSE Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging. You can also use these links to learn more about Anti-Asian Hate and efforts by STOP AAPI HATE to address this violence.
As previously announced, on Tuesday, March 23, HGSE will also host an event: “Community Conversation: Addressing Anti-Asian Racism.” Here is a short description:
While anti-Asian racism is not a new phenomenon in the United States, hate crimes against the Asian-American community have increased by 1800% across the country during the pandemic. This Community Conversation is an opportunity for alumni and students to come together and learn about the history and context of this anti-Asian racism, and to discuss how to support and stand in solidarity with the AAPI members of our larger HGSE community. In addition to the time to learn more about how the current climate fits into the larger historical context of the United States, we will have time for intimate community conversations and to share networks, resources, and calls to action.
Special thanks to Professor Jo Kim and the hosts of the event, The Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging, The Alliance, and Development and Alumni Relations (DAR). Please look out for additional opportunities to learn, discuss, and take action.
We must all condemn hate in the strongest possible terms and work at both the individual and national levels to confront this malice. While there has been an uptick during the COVID pandemic, Anti-Asian racism has a long history in the United States, and what we do now could help to address the persistent harm faced by many Asian Americans. I am hopeful about what we can do together.