In solidarity with the bereaved families, with Asian & Asian American communities around the world, and with all those who are committed to fighting racism, the English Department adds its collective voice to condemn the murders of predominantly Asian American women workers that were perpetrated in Atlanta by a white gunman on March 16, 2021.
We affirm the words of Georgia state representative Bee Nguyen that these shootings lie at the “intersection of gender-based violence, misogyny and xenophobia.” This latest act of violence is not an isolated incident, but part of ongoing patterns and policies of violence against Asians and Asian Americans that have permeated US culture and institutions for generations and are rooted in settler colonial white supremacy.
While the last four years, and in particular the past administration’s response to the pandemic, likely exacerbated the recent rise in anti-Asian violence, we would be shortsighted in our work as scholars committed to calling out injustice if we failed to acknowledging the destructive impact of local policing and federal practices, including immigration and deportation policies, as well as the longstanding impact of US military incursions throughout Asia over the past century.
Although we recognize the limited impact that any statement such as this can have, we commit ourselves through our ongoing research, our teaching, our public statements, and our roles in the stewardship of the institution to challenge the perpetuation of violent, racist injustices. We do so in solidarity with the continuing anti-racist work of Asian American and other BIPOC communities and their organizations.
We at UCR would like to respectfully acknowledge and recognize our responsibility to the original and current caretakers of this land, water, and air: the Cahuilla [ka-weeahh], Tongva [tong-va], Luiseño [loo-say-ngo], and Serrano [se-ran-oh] peoples and all of their ancestors and descendants, past, present, and future. Today this meeting place is home to many Indigenous peoples from all over the world, including UCR faculty, students, and staff, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on these homelands.