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Hundreds Protest at Stop Asian Hate Rally

LOS ANGELES, CA - Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in front of the Los Angeles City Hall protesting the surge in Anti- Asian Hate crimes.

Photo, Andrea Esparza

The Stop Asian Hate Rally was sparked by the Atlanta mass shooting, where six Asian women were killed at gunpoint. Protestors believe Atlanta's authorities' refusal to label the incident as a hate crime due to insufficient evidence demonstrates the blatant disregard for Asian lives in the United States.

NBC News released an article containing an analysis of police department statistics showing a 150 percent increase in Anti-Asian Hate crimes since the beginning of the Pandemic. Many protesters, including immigration lawyer Qiang Bjornbak, said President Trump used China as a scapegoat for the Pandemic.

"Certain words uttered by former President Trump are related to the increase because he is calling this the China Virus, Kung flu Virus and in the past year there have been hundreds of incidents of hate speech and crimes against Asians, said Bjornback."

Bjornbak understands law enforcement is taking precautions, but she also believes in justice.

“Police are taking precaution before prosecuting somebody…it is obvious that the suspect killed six Asian women. We cannot change the facts; he targeted these Asian business places and killed a bunch of Asians, said Bjornbak.”

The Answer Coalition Organization supports the protest and wants politicians to realize the impact of their words. It is no coincidence the rise in hate towards Asians is occurring during the pandemic.

“ What the President and Politicians say has a lot of weight because what people see on T.V is what they believe, and they take it into their hearts as truth even if it is not, said protestor Alex Roh.”

The Atlanta mass shooting that occurred on March 16 fed the fire, and protesters had enough. The Answer Coalition Organization supported the rally and demanded answers from the Atlanta police.

To many demonstrators, the incident seemed like an apparent hate crime. However, Atlanta Law enforcement and the suspect said it was not racially motivated.

Demonstrators filled the streets of Los Angeles, marching from City Hall to Koreatown, chanting Asian Hate has got to go, and Asian Lives Matter. However, demonstrators not only used this rally to advocate for the lives of Asian Americans. They also marched in solidarity with other ethnic groups targeted for violence and discrimination.

Protest organizer Kathleen Deleso emphasized the need to come together and challenge the Model Minority Label placed upon Asian Americans because it causes further division.

"Asian Americans are labeled as model minorities. We are taught to be silent, but it is deeply hurting our community. We cannot be silent. This label is isolating and divides us from other minorities, but we need to unite and not fight against each other because that's what they want, says Deloso."

This segment of the Asian American community stands strong with both the Black and Brown Lives matter movement and wants the Atlanta law enforcement to call the mass shooting a hate crime.

Video - San Francisco Chronicle

Video, Andrea Esparza

Audio, Andrea Esparza

By Andrea Esparza

With contributions from NBC News, The Answer Coalition, Washington Post

Photo, Andrea Esparza

Video, San Francisco Chronicle

Video, Andrea Esparza

Audio, Andrea Esparza


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