This is usually a time of celebrations for many of our Asian American friends, as many get ready to celebrate the Lunar New Year on February 12th, welcoming the year of the Ox. Unfortunately, there has been a chain of recent attacks on Asian Americans, and specifically elderly Asian Americans, across the country. These attacks were fueled by the xenophobic rhetoric stemming from misinformation about COVID, which has led to many other physical and verbal attacks against Asian Americans since last year. These incidents of hate should not be tolerated. We stand in solidarity with everyone in the Asian American community who is hurting right now.
Words have impact. Words like the poetry recited by poet laureate Amanda Gorman lifted our spirits and gave the nation hope and strength. Words that focus on blame can incite hatred, culminating in these violent attacks. This is a clear demonstration that our words can hurt - how misinformation led to actual wounds and deaths.
At VISIONS, we place great importance on the value of community and interpersonal connectedness. We strive to create community in our work and conduct ourselves with empathy, so that we seek to understand and accept others. With this in mind, all of us can play a part in learning about these recent incidents and help raise awareness. As we send our well wishes to all of our Asian American friends, let us look forward to continuing our work in healing and building a stronger community.
- Elika Dadsetan-Foley, Executive Director