“At first I was excited! I was proud that more people were interested in watching my class,” Chong recalled. “Then all of a sudden, we hear vicious slurs come over the speakers — ‘f*ggot,’ ‘d*ke,’ ‘lesbian,’ … ‘You f*cking ch*nk’ [and] ‘You ch*nk, the coronavirus is happening because of you!’
“I froze for what felt like 10 minutes but it may have only been 30 seconds.”
Fortunately, CSE’s communication director was present to block the Zoombombers, Chong said. But her wife, who was filming the class, and her best friend, who was watching the live stream, were visibly upset.
“The words that were projected at me at me did not affect me as much (because I’ve been called all of those things in my life, it wasn’t anything new) as seeing the pure shock and pain that I saw on my wife and best friend’s faces,” Chong wrote.
“It’s one thing to read about racial and xenophobic attacks. However, when you actually hear such hate projected at someone you care about, the sheer weight and impact of it changes. It hits a little deeper.”
“Asian Americans are being attacked when the world is suffering,” Chong noted. “So when people ask me if it’s a big deal that the President of the United States calls COVID-19 the ‘Chinese Virus,’ yes it’s a f*cking big deal…”
Chong said she now wonders whether the stares she gets “on a daily basis” comes from her looking different or that people are afraid to come close to her because she is Asian.
Instagram users also offered messages of support.
“You are an amazing and strong woman. Thank you for sharing this unfortunate experience,” one user wrote in the comments. “May it shine a light on the senseless hatred and ignorant people who call themselves human beings. Stay strong and know that you are loved for your strength and confidence in sharing this terrible experience.”
Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.
Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.
However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.
We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community.
Even a $1 contribution goes a long way. Thank you for everyone’s support. We love you all and can’t appreciate you guys enough.