Flipping the script on the term “Model Minority”


Jason Andrei Espiritu

Billboards are placed throughout LA to promote awareness on Asian hate.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been over 2,800 reports of hate crimes across the United States directly towards Asian Americans. While the focus has mainly been on the coronavirus, there has been a recent surge in hate crimes towards Asian Americans which has caught the eyes of many people around the world. Now the question is, what is causing all this recent hate towards Asian Americans?

As we all know the coronavirus supposedly came from Wuhan, China. Because of its origins, people are now targeting Asian Americans and using them as scapegoats for what has happened in the past year.

Senior Adrian Garcia believes that not only are Asians being used as scapegoats for this situation, but a lot of this hatred is stemming from previous hate. 

“They’re being used as scapegoats because people are looking for someone to blame, but I also think there’s a long history of hatred towards Asians. They’re just using this pandemic to actually be more aggressive towards them,” said Garcia.

The demographic of these attacks are more towards older or female Asians. Female Asians are actually twice as likely to experience some sort of hate incident compared to the opposite gender. The reason for this is that many believe it’s easier to target those that are of the two categories. One of the most recent attacks, a shooting at a spa in Atlanta which killed a total of 8 people, 6 being Asian women, only goes to show how serious and dangerous the overall situation has gotten. 

Arlene Espiritu, age 58, describes the fear and difficulty the situations have caused in her daily life. 

“It’s so scary nowadays. I’m older so it’s harder for me to defend myself if anything were to happen. There wouldn’t be much I can do in that situation. The shooting in Atlanta was so scary because I had planned to go to a spa and get a massage. Now I’m so scared to go because I don’t feel safe going out,” said Espiritu. 

Even though the media coverage on Asian attacks have only recently been noticed, the attacks themselves have been happening since the start of the pandemic. The sad truth is that, in our history Asians are overlooked at times when it comes to hate towards that community. Why so? One possibility could be the fact that Asians are typically seen as the model citizen. Because people view the race as being sort of “perfect,” it shadows the problems the community experiences. 

Junior Albert Huynh gives his opinion as to why it has taken so long for the media to give Asians the proper coverage the community deserves. 

“Honestly I’m surprised it took this long for it to get some coverage. Ever since the start of the pandemic I’ve seen a lot of Asian hate in the media… Asians are at a weird spot because we are a minority. Not many people think of Asians as minorities because they think we’re so well off and don’t get that much hate. We’re sort of the punching bag,” said Huynh. 

At the end of the day, we are all human. We’re made from the same flesh and bones. We might look different from each other on the outside, but internally we’re the same. Even though people don’t see eye to eye sometimes, if we keep on pushing for an equal world, that time will soon come. 

“Stop the hate. Don’t let the hate spread further. Make sure everybody knows that we’re all the same and that we’re equal. We all should be treated the same. Just cause I’m Asian doesn’t mean I have more privilege than the other minorities,” said Huynh.