Rep. Grace Meng slammed former President Donald Trump on Thursday, accusing him of being behind the spike in anti-Asian attacks over the past year. She said that his use of terms like “Chinese virus” and “Kung flu” was racially charged and contributed to the attacks.
The virus was is literally from China. To call it the “China virus” or “Chinese virus” makes total and perfect sense.
“When I first heard the former president use words like ‘kung flu’ and ‘Chinese virus,’ I was really horrified. And every time he said it, I thought, okay, this will be the last time. He couldn't possibly continue to use it,” Meng cried.
“And even the WHO, the World Health Organization, even his own secretary of health suggested that we don't use words like that, but he continued,” she said, “and so, while racially motivated harassment of Asian Americans is a longstanding issue and certainly didn't start last year. But since COVID-19 began, the incidents have been nonstop.”
“And when you have a leader in this country who has a tremendous platform, use words and fuel false facts and misinformation about the virus and it's perpetuated by the leaders, the top leaders of the Republican party in the White House and in the Congress, what happens is people, Asian Americans are getting shoved, assaulted, spat on,” Meng continued.
The Hill reports:
Stop AAPI Hate, a reporting center that tracks such incidents against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, said in a report released earlier this week that it has received nearly 3,800 first-hand accounts of anti-Asian hate since March 2020, around the time the pandemic began to take hold in the United States.
In New York City alone, Clinton noted during the podcast, anti-hate crimes also skyrocketed by more than 2020 by more than eight times compared to the previous year.
“Just two days ago in a park right near my house, a mom was out with her baby and a man came up to her, spat at her direction three times in front of her baby and said, ‘Chinese virus go home,’” said Meng, recalled.
“And this happened five, 10 minutes from my house. So as a parent, as a mom, it just breaks my heart to have had to talk to my kids about this. I got to middle school kids and it scares me. It makes me angry and it just stems from false information and cowardly acts,” she added.
Don’t get me wrong, I do not think that people should be acting like that. The woman with the baby is obviously racist or misguided and was in the wrong. However, I do not think that using the term “Chinese virus” is contributing to prejudice that people feel.
They have a heart problem and need to take it up with themselves and God. Eliminating terms that are simply descriptive would be absurd and would not change how people act.
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