Debra Sweet | March 25, 2021
The spike in physical and verbal attacks on Asian American Pacific Islanders in the U.S. is horrific, unacceptable and predictable. Think, for example, that Asians were the first group of human beings specifically excluded from immigrating here in 1882 and, for another example, 74 million people who voted for Trump after he called COVID-19 the “China virus.” Anti-Asian hate crimes reported to police in the largest U.S. cities jumped nearly 150% in 2020, says the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.
Investigators of crimes start by looking for patterns. What more profound pattern could you find then that of an empire built on the destruction of native peoples and enslavement of millions from Africa and stealing parts of Mexico? The patterns continue from there: the U.S. built into a colonial power by invading and exploiting the Philippines, Puerto Rico and other countries in the Caribbean, Hawai’i and other Pacific islands. The ruling forces saw World War II as an opportunity to expand, becoming an imperialist superpower, controlling the global capitalist economy, knocking out rivals via military invasion, assassinations (Lumumba, for instance) and by economic strangulation. Look at what are called the Vietnam War and the Korean War and what was done to Cambodia and Laos.
This empire mentality fostered from the top has deeply and negatively screwed up how people living here think American lives are more important than others; that they are “God’s chosen people.” Now, open fascists with political and media power have taken this to a worse level, in ways we have to stop. They vilify Latinx immigrants as “rapists” and criminals; call open white supremacists “good people,” make heroes of police who kill people of color with impunity, consider non-white lives expendable in this pandemic and speculate that South Asian executives of media companies are dangerous.
White supremacy, misogyny, and xenophobia are baked in to U.S. domination. You’ll appreciate this short call to Free Yourself from the GTF! (or Great Tautological Fallacy).