Updated: 3 days ago
TW: Police Brutality
Dear Asian Youth,
I cannot speak on behalf of the Black community nor do I intend to. Rather, I hope to raise awareness and use this platform to do so. The attention belongs solely to Black people, and we need to listen to what they have to say. As an Asian American, I will not speak for the Black community or dictate how they should feel. I do not want to overstep by any means but hope to educate fellow Asians and to provide perspective. Marginalized groups should stick together and support each other in the fight against oppression, as we are stronger together. For instance, following the coronavirus, the Black community called out the xenophobia and racism towards Asians. The privilege we have and the anti-Blackness that persists within our community must be recognized and addressed. Our privilege allows us to bring awareness to the racism in our society, and as the number of tragedies continues to surface, we cannot enable ourselves to become desensitized.
#AllLivesMatter is not something we should be supporting. It is only used to invalidate the #BlackLivesMatter movement and was not born until after #BlackLivesMatter began. Notice how paradoxical it is that #AllLivesMatter is not used as an argument to justify gun control or counter-argue coronavirus protests. Yes, all lives do matter, but currently, Black lives are the ones at stake. As Asians, we cannot simply look away from the injustices Black people face, just because we aren't directly affected. This movement does not discredit our hardships, and we should not silence Black individuals; it is their turn to speak and we must listen.
As you may have heard, George Floyd, a Black man, was murdered by white police officer Derek Chauvin. The video of Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and forty-six seconds, despite Floyd yelling that he could not breathe, quickly surfaced online and gained rapid attention. In the video, the Asian police officer literally turned his back on Floyd, when he could have easily prevented the murder. As allies, we must take action and do better. It is not the Black community’s job to educate us. We are responsible for doing that ourselves. We cannot support cops because they serve and defend a racist institution, instead of the people they swore to protect. When protesters arrived at Chauvin’s house, dozens of cops surrounded his home to shelter him. The arrest was not made until controversy arose, petitions were signed, and his second address was found. The arrest was not made until his safety was compromised. Even then, he was only charged with third-degree murder, which is consistent with accidentally shoving someone to death. Almost nine minutes of intentionally choking a man should be deemed as first-degree murder. Not to mention, the other three officers involved in the murder of Floyd were not initially charged. While they did not physically murder Floyd themselves, they all bear responsibility as they were complicit in the murder. They watched as Chauvin pinned Floyd down. It was only after public outrage that Chauvin’s charge was raised to second-degree murder, and the remaining three cops were convicted of their crime. The system continues to fail Black people, just as it has failed them for the past four hundred years. For instance, institutionalized racism stems far deeper in our nation than most realize. American policing was founded upon anti-Blackness: it originated upon slave patrolling, which remains evident in the similarities between modern police and slave patrol badges. To be proper allies, we must work to actively reform the law enforcement system.