#HateIsAVirus: People Are Using Masks to Fight Hate Against Asian Americans

#HateIsAVirus: People Are Using Masks to Fight Hate Against Asian Americans#HateIsAVirus: People Are Using Masks to Fight Hate Against Asian Americans
Face masks no longer just prevent the transmission of COVID-19 as activists on the internet have begun using them to call for an end in hate crimes committed against Asian Americans.
For the past several weeks, incidents of racism and xenophobia against Asian Americans have surged, with Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) reporting a rate of 100 cases per day.
Chu, along with other lawmakers and civil rights organizations, have urged Congress to establish tangible steps to combat the problem, but such efforts struggle as the administration continues to attach the word “Chinese” to the virus.
To make matters worse, hate speech against China and Chinese people, in particular, has reportedly escalated by 900% on Twitter, while visits to hate sites and “specific posts” against Asians has increased by 200%.
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Now, a social media campaign using the hashtag #HateIsAVirus has started making rounds to express solidarity with victims of hate crimes.
The campaign encourages people from all over the world to post photos of themselves wearing masks, showing that the coronavirus affects anyone regardless of race or nationality.
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Malea Emma, an 8-year-old singer, actor and YouTuber, shared a video of herself singing “Yellow” from “Crazy Rich Asians” in support of the campaign.
“Please stop racism and hate against Asians everywhere! We have to unite to fight the coronavirus. We don’t need another virus in this world,” her parents posted on her Twitter page.
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Organizers of the campaign recently posted a five-step process in developing a “vaccine” against hate.
It includes (1) calling out hate when one sees it, (2) casting negativity to the side, (3) turning the pain into positivity, (4) sharing messages of resiliency, love and encouragement, and (5) becoming a leader of change in one’s community.
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“It doesn’t matter how you speak up, it only matters that you do,” the organizers wrote in a tweet, which features a piece of artwork supporting the campaign.
“Whether through art, poetry, music, selfies, dance, etc., do what you need to do to raise your voice and be heard.”
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Check out other social media posts supporting the campaign below:
Feature Images via @magg.chui (left), @caliwu (center) and @duckybokki (right)
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