The continuous racism toward Asians needs to end

We saw it happen in 2014 and we are seeing the world unravel into a downward spiral once again. Acts of racism toward people of color have heavily increased over the past few months due to the powerful force: the coronavirus. The big question is why?

Johnathan Mok is merely a student attending school in London to pursue his academic goals, but he was suddenly attacked by a group of boys, kicking and punching him in all areas of his body.  The sickening remark made by one of the boys has left not just a physical scar, but an emotional one as well. 

“We don’t want the coronavirus in our country.”

The pains of hearing this as the boys continue to punch and kick Mok are more than just an ill-tempered fight. It is an example of xenophobia. It is an example of how the rest of the world chooses to view the millions of innocent men and women of Asian descent. 

The growing racial abuse towards East Asians has caused the UK hate crime awareness group, Stop Hate UK, to receive many calls regarding verbal abuse, discrimination and other forms of racism. These claims, arising from a common perception that all Asians are members of the Chinese community and would likely carry the virus, went on an extreme level of hostility. 

In 2014, the Ebola outbreak in the forested rural region of southeastern Guinea  caused people to create the same perception that all African people carried the virus, spreading it to other people around the globe. As a society, we fail to recognize the growing hatred that stems from the ill-mannered perception of ethnic groups. The struggles our community has to reunite all racial groups will continue to be a difficulty if there is no solution to help those suffering. As an Asian person myself, it pains me to see innocent people suffer from the countless racial remarks and slurs and the scars that result from them. Why? I could never answer that question. Why would people think that? Why would someone be so cruel? How? 

Instead of setting people apart, we need to educate one another. The virus is not an excuse to be xenophobic toward Asians, however, it is a great opportunity to understand the efforts Asian doctors have fought against the spread of it. We also need to understand that there are over 20 million Asian Americans in the United States and a 4.463 billion population worldwide. To put this into perspective, as of March 13, there are currently more than 128,000 active cases of the coronavirus. Out of the 4.463 billion Asians in the world, the active cases make up less than one percent of the global population. Regardless, we should not be distracted by the fear and inexcusable xenophobia arising from the pandemic. Rather we should continue to fight for a cure instead of fighting the millions of innocent people.