An Asian American justice group has blamed White supremacy and racism as the cause for Tuesday night's Atlanta shooting and is calling for communities of color to band together to condemn racist violence.
In a statement released Wednesday, Stephanie Cho, executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta, said:
“We are heartbroken by these acts of violence. Six Asian women lost their lives. Now is the time to hold the victims and their families in our hearts and in our light. We’re calling on our allies across communities of color to stand with us in grief and solidarity against racist violence in all its forms. When our most vulnerable community members are targeted, we all need to band together."
"While the details of the shootings are still emerging, this happened under the trauma of increasing violence against Asian Americans nationwide, fueled by white supremacy and systemic racism. While anti-Asian violence is woven throughout our nation’s history, the Trump administration’s scapegoating of Asians for the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has increased the incidence of hate and violence against Asian Americans. According to the most recent data, hate incidents targeting Asian Americans rose by nearly 150% in 2020, with Asian American women twice as likely to be targeted," the statement continued.
Phi Nguyen, litigation director at the organization, said: “That the Asian women murdered yesterday were working highly vulnerable jobs during an ongoing pandemic speaks directly to the compounding impacts of sexism, structural violence, and white supremacy.”
The statement called for local and state government to "provide robust in-language interpretation and translation for crisis intervention resources, including support for mental health and immigration services. It is time for Georgia to invest in transformative justice that begins with cross racial dialogue and community-building."