'It needs to stop. We cannot be silent': Stars speak out against anti-Asian racism

By Zach Harper

On March 16, eight people were killed in a series of shootings in the Atlanta area, and six the people who died were women of Asian descent. Authorities say they haven't "ruled out bias as a motivating factor" in the events, according to The New York Times.

"Whatever the motivation was for this guy, we know that the majority of the victims were Asian," Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said. "We also know that this is an issue that is happening across the country. It is unacceptable, it is hateful and it has to stop."

Stars have been responding by taking to social media to denounce anti-Asian racism.

"The targeting of our Asian brothers and sisters is sickening, but not surprising given the normalizing of anti-Asian hate speech in the past year," Mindy Kaling tweeted. "We have to #StopAsianHate, enough is enough!"

Former Hawaii Five-0 star Daniel Dae Kim tweeted that he will be speaking to the Congressional House Committee on the Judiciary about increasing anti-Asian hatred and racism on March 18, and encouraged people to watch his remarks live.

"How much longer are we going to tolerate, a word I never use, this madness of hate to continue!?" the great Dionne Warwick tweeted.

According to Stop AAPI Hate, since March 2020, when COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, there have been nearly 3,800 reports of anti-Asian incidents – with 503 of those having been logged since the beginning of this year alone.

Anti-Asian racism and hate crimes have also been increasing in Canada, according to The RepresentASIAN Project.

Less than 10 days ago, Kim's Convenience star Simu Liu wrote a column for Variety in which he detailed how he increasingly finds himself concerned for his parents in light of everything that's been going on.

"The truth is that Asian people have been targeted and discriminated against for far, far longer than COVID has been around," he wrote. "These recent attacks, fueled by racist rhetoric in the wake of the coronavirus, are yet another reminder that we are only seen as the foreigners, the unwelcome presence... the other.

"Racism doesn't always come in the form of a white hood and pitchfork; it's just not that simple... Anti-Asian racism is very real, and it will not be solved with an opulent rom-com or Marvel superhero, but with you – the bystanders – acknowledging the validity of our pain."

Olivia Munn, whose mother came to the United States as a refugee from Vietnam in 1975, took to Instagram to speak out against four attacks against Asian-Americans in February and earlier this month. In February, she also wrote about an attack on her friend's mother that left her hospitalized and needing stitches.

"To simply exist as a minority in this country is seen as a protest to some," she wrote on Feb. 9. "We need help amplifying the outrage. We need help to feel safe in our country. We need help to be safe in our country."

If you'd like to learn more about how to take action against anti-Asian racism yourself, Asian Americans Advancing Justice is offering intervention trainings throughout March and April. You can register through their website.

Don't miss a beat with HELLO! Canada's Daily Hits newsletter, your daily dose of royal and celebrity news, fashion, weddings and more. CLICK HERE to sign up for free!