Trigger warning: This letter contains references to racial slurs. This may be difficult for some readers.
We are writing today to reach out to our SF State community to support, uplift and protect our Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander faculty, staff, students and families.
We are outraged by the attacks on our Asian-American community that have become commonplace. According to Stop AAPI Hate, 3,795 acts of anti-Asian bigotry were recorded between March 19, 2020, and February 28, 2021. We were not surprised to learn that women were targets of racist incidents 68 percent of the time, experiencing verbal harassment when out in public. We, ourselves, have experienced this racism firsthand.
We have been called racial slurs:
“chink,” “jap,” “gook,” “chinaman,” “ching chong chinaman.”
We have been treated as foreigners:
“Go back to where you came from.”
“You’re stealing our jobs.”And we continually experience microaggressions:
where we are really from,
where we learned to speak English so well,
why we don’t have an accent,
if we are able to speak “good” English.
Why not let the insults roll off our back? Why not simply ignore the racist taunts?
Our silence has sometimes been interpreted as complicity when our sisters and brothers of color were victims of bigotry. No more.
On our campus, 33 percent of the student population identifies as Asian, Asian American or Pacific Islander American. We, along with our students and many members of our SF State community, have experienced increased levels of fear, isolation, sadness and anger. Therefore, we ask that you join us in condemning misogyny, racism and anti-Asian hate crimes by taking these actions:
- Reject the insidious stereotype of the model minority, used to divide communities of color;
- Demand justice for racist attacks on communities of color;
- Call for justice for misogynistic attacks;
- Stand in solidarity with communities of color as well as our white allies to combat racism and white supremacy together.
Department of English Language and Literature