Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in this piece are solely those of the author.
Along the streets of San Francisco, an elderly Chinese man faces a group of African-Americans as he is robbed. Bystanders cheer on his tormentors. The man, who is the same age as my grandpa, is defenseless as he is mocked, as he is chased down the street where he has collected recyclables for the past year, as he is humiliated. Silent tears stream down his face as he stumbles. Again and again, they scream at him, “I hate Asians!” Again and again, they bash his head with a trash picker. What led to this attack? He was just collecting cans to earn money. He was just collecting cans.