‘I belong here’: VP Kamala, Asian-Americans slam hate crime against Fil-Am woman


Posted at Mar 31 2021 06:38 AM

MANILA—Members of the Asian-American community are in uproar once again after a 65-year-old Filipino-American woman was attacked by a man in New York City.

The assault, which took place on a sidewalk in broad daylight in Midtown Manhattan on Monday, was caught on CCTV from inside an adjacent building. 

Bystanders seemingly looked on without intervening. At the time this story was posted, the woman was not seriously injured and declined any medical assistance.

This is the latest incident in a growing string of attacks against Asian-Americans in the United States, including the shootings at 3 different spas in the state of Georgia. Eight were killed, including 6 Asian-Americans.

US Vice President Kamala Harris early Wednesday morning (Manila time) condemned the attack many have branded as hate crime.

"A harm against any one of us is a harm against all of us. @POTUS
and I will not be silent which is why our administration is taking steps to address the rise in violence against the Asian American community, including an initiative to combat anti-Asian violence," she said in a statement.

Harris is a daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants.

A lot of Asian-Americans have expressed their outrage on social media pages, and posting the message: "I’m Asian American and I belong here."

"I don't want to live in a world where a 65 year old Asian American woman gets assaulted on her way to church. Witnessed by security, who not only fail to come to her aid, but also close the door on her after she has been attacked," an Asian-American netizen tweeted.

"I know it won't be at the forefront of the national news this week, but don't think for one minute that the Asian American community isn't still under siege. We are not invisible," another one said.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he has ordered the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force to investigate the incident.

"The rise in hate crimes against the Asian American community is abhorrent and let me be clear: hate has no place in New York. Not now, not ever," he said in a tweet.

New York police are now searching for the suspect.

Cuomo earlier said the violence was becoming "an epidemic" across the country that "must stop now."

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called on anyone who witnesses an attack to "literally shout" to disturb the aggressor and attract attention.

Several demonstrations expressing solidarity with Asian-American communities have also taken place. They have been attended by New York mayoral candidates and the Reverend Al Sharpton, the influential Black rights activist.

New York has more than 1 million inhabitants of Asian descent.

In the week of March 15 to 21, police recorded a total of nine hate crimes, up from three in the same period of 2020.

Filipino vlogger and multimedia personality James Deakin said the incident made him "ashamed to be human."


--With a report from Agence France Presse


Watch more on iWantTFC