Expert: C.N. Le, director of the Asian & Asian American Studies program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and author of the book “Asian American Assimilation: Ethnicity, Immigration, and Socioeconomic Attainment”
Topic: Expert commentary on the rise of anti-Asian racism across America
Available: Via phone, email or web video interview at your convenience
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C.N. Le, director of the Asian & Asian American Studies program and senior lecturer of sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is available at your convenience to discuss the alarming and continuing rise of anti-Asian racism across America.
The following quotes from Le may be used with attribution, partially or in-total:
“Since March 2020, racist and xenophobic incidents against Asians and Asian Americans have spiked, with the website StopAAPIHate reporting 3,800 incidents of harassment, bullying, verbal assault and violence over the past year, with many, many more going unreported. Each of these incidents are painful but important to hear about.”
“Asian Americans have not been getting any help from the government. As NBC News reported last April, federal agencies such as the Department of Justice, the FBI, and the CDC implemented specific steps to counteract hate crimes following the SARS outbreak and 9/11. But no such plans exist when it comes to the COVID pandemic. Instead, the previous president repeatedly referred to the pandemic as the ‘China virus’ or ‘kung flu’ and, in the process, blamed an entire country and people, reinforced ‘Yellow Peril’ stereotypes and ultimately condoned and even encouraged hostility against, not only Chinese, but millions of Asians and Asian Americans in the U.S. and globally.”
“While many people have rightfully condemned these attacks and expressed support and solidarity with Asian Americans, in recent weeks, some have focused almost exclusively on the racial identity of some of the perpetrators of these incidents and have resorted to using blatantly racist stereotypes against Black people and feeding into anti-Blackness. We want to stress that these instances of violence against Asian Americans should not be seen as just a result of individual action, but rather as enabled by the systematic violence inherent in white supremacy. There is a critical need for Asian Americans to unite in solidarity with other groups of color, especially with the Black community, and to support their efforts to demand racial justice, stop the systematic killing of Blacks and the rise of white nationalist movements, and to address fundamental institutional inequities related to economic insecurity, healthcare, unemployment, housing, and incarceration, etc. Indeed, groups such as Asians for Black Lives are organizing such efforts, but there needs to be much more awareness and involvement by Asian Americans, both on campuses and beyond.”
Le has been quoted by media outlets and organizations such as The New York Times, the Associated Press, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, and The Washington Post. He also maintains Asian-Nation.org, an online information resource about Asian American history, culture and current events.
Contact him directly via ExpertFile to request further comment regarding these issues.
C.N. Le Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Director of the Asian & Asian American Studies Certificate Program
C.N. Le discusses racial/ethnic relations in the U.S., immigration, socio-demographic outcomes among Asian Americans.