Lifting up our Asian American and Pacific Islander communities

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In the wake of the hateful attacks in Georgia on Tuesday, March 16, I want to lift up our Asian American and Pacific Islander leaders, staff, and community members. My heart goes out to all of those in shock, and in a state of grief and mourning. Six Asian American women were among eight people killed in a targeted spree in Georgia, and although not all of the details are known, it is clear that a 21 year old white man is responsible for the attacks. The impact of his actions are felt in our communities that are marginalized and historically discriminated against.  We do not condone these actions for any reason, and the roots of racism and hate continue to have too great of an impact toward radicalizing young white men in America.

At this point we know and speak the names of six victims — Julie Park, Hyeon Jeong Park, Delaina Ashley Yaun, Paul Andre Michels, Xiaojie Tan, and Daoyou Feng. I hope in the coming days the media will focus on honoring their lives. I also hope there will be courageous, vulnerable conversations between white men about these dynamics and the need for them to take action to stop perpetuating racism and hate.

I urge everyone to be supportive, to recognize the impact that these attacks across the country are making on those in our own community, and to intentionally create a safe space for those most deeply impacted.