Condemning Anti-Asian Violence
Lawyers for Civil Rights (LCR) stands with the Asian-Pacific Islander community — in Georgia and across the country — as we mourn the murder of six Asian-American women. For months, law enforcement has ignored waves of anti-Asian violence, hate crimes, and vitriol sweeping the nation. In our own backyard, LCR received reports of Cambodian-American residents in Lowell being intimidated on Election Day, and we have monitored countless incidents of identity-based bullying in public schools and workplaces across Massachusetts.
LCR condemns the rush by Atlanta police to claim the attack is not racially motivated, or that it was spurred by misogyny alone, rather than by hatred of Asian-Americans. Identity is intersectional; we cannot ignore the history of how Asian-American women have been perceived and treated in the United States. Women are disproportionately the victims of hate crimes targeting the Asian-Pacific Islander community.
Challenging white supremacy must include combating anti-Asian violence, bias, and hate. This also entails combating efforts to invisibilize Asian-Americans.
Lawyers for Civil Rights calls on local, state, and national leaders — as well as local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies — to address this epidemic of violence against Asian-Pacific Islander communities.
We must do more than simply condemn racial violence. The fight for justice and equality does not end when headlines fade. We must acknowledge that, despite the pervasive “model minority” myth, the Asian-Pacific Islander experience is nuanced and complex, with people experiencing discrimination and language barriers in many aspect of public life. For example, there has been little effort in Massachusetts to grapple with the fact that Southeast Asian groups, including Vietnamese- and Cambodian-Americans, have lower household income and educational attainment than other Asian populations. In Boston, little emphasis is placed on the significant poverty rate of Asian-Americans living in Chinatown or Dorchester.
LCR is proud to represent all people of color and immigrants. We know that it is only when we stand together that we can truly dismantle white supremacy. We currently represent Boston’s Asian-Pacific Islander communities, as well as Black and Latinx communities, in a federal court intervention to defend diversity in Boston’s selective public schools. In this case, we are proudly partnering with the Asian Outreach Unit of Greater Boston Legal Services, the Asian-American Resource Workshop, and the Asian-Pacific Islander Civic Action Network to challenge harmful stereotypes of Asian-American community members. In Lowell, we recently represented a coalition of Asian-American and Latinx voters who successfully fought for greater representation on the Lowell City Council and School Committee.
LCR stands ready to protect and defend the rights of all people of color to live free from violence, discrimination, and hate. If you or someone you know has been the victim of a hate crime, please contact us at email@example.com or (617) 482-1145.