The shocking shooting rampage in Atlanta targeting Asian spas, followed not long after by an attack on a 65-year-old Asian American woman in Midtown Manhattan this week, felt to us like the culmination of a year of increased hatred, a year of Asian American and Pacific Islander people clamoring for recognition when our suffering wasn’t believed.
As Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) medical students, we have had front-row seats in seeing the hikes in anti-Asian racism this past year. While many health care workers across the country were being called “heroes” for treating people with Covid-19, AAPI health care workers were often vilified. Some of our classmates were told to “go back to China” when they walked outside. One student at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine was attacked and dragged after being called “Chinese virus” on her way to work.