Skip to main content

Statement in Support of Asian Communities Affected by Rising Violence

We stand in solidarity with our Asian and Asian American students, staff, and faculty, and with all who have experienced racism and other forms of injustice. 

Attacks on Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander communities linked to the Covid-19 pandemic have recently increased dramatically. Sadly, the scapegoating of Asian Americans has a long history. It harkens back to dark moments of legally enforced discrimination against Asians in this country. Harassment and discrimination happened often in moments of geopolitical tension, moral panic, and economic woes. We saw historical examples of that –the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the Immigration Act of 1924, and the Japanese internment camps during World War II.

Blaming the pandemic on the group confirms the “perpetual foreigner” stereotype some still hold towards Asian Americans. As sociological studies have pointed out, many Asian Americans have been asked the question: “Where are you originally from?” Even the seemingly positive label of “model minority” is a marked category that backhandedly distinguishes the group from the rest of the citizenry. 

Diversity and inclusion is not an empty slogan. We encourage our Asian American and Asian students to speak out about their experiences. We need all members of our community—faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students—to stand up against racist and xenophobic attacks. We as a community will continue to promote critical dialogues about how ethnic and racial boundaries are created to separate groups into “them” and “us.”