The Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee deplores explicit bias and racism against Asians. Acts of bias, bullying, and violence are acts of hate and cannot be tolerated. According to the Stop AAPI Hate coalition, there have been 3000+ hate incidents against Asians since 2020. We recognize the difficulties Asian communities experience in the United States and that these incidents are fueled by many (many) years of exclusion, including legislation directly against Asians, and the recent acts are likely amplified from the pandemic. The Entomology and Plant Pathology Diversity and Inclusion Committee CONTINUES to condemn ALL racism and acts of hate; and we will ALWAYS uplift, follow, & amplify the voices of OUR community.
Below, we have compiled information about bias reporting on UT’s campus and about Asian American heritage in the United States.
Reporting Acts Bias
All individuals within the University of Tennessee community are encouraged to report acts of bias (direct reporting link below). The University of Tennessee is committed to maintaining a safe environment grounded in civility and respect for ALL members within the campus community. A “bias” is defined as any act that is motivated, in whole or in part, due to an individual’s age, race, ethnicity, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, immigration or citizenship status, marital status, national origin, veteran status, religion and/or religious practice, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, weight, political affiliation, medical condition, mental health, or any combination of these or related factors. More about UTK and reporting bias here.
Bias related-incidents are incidents that occur on campus or within an area that impacts the UT community and which an individual can reasonably conclude is directed at a member or a group of the UT community due to that individual’s or group’s actual or perceived age, race, ethnicity, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, immigration or citizenship status, marital status, national origin, veteran status, religion and/or religious practice, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, weight, political affiliation, medical condition, mental health, or any combination of these or related factors.
If you have witnessed bias and/or been a victim of bias, please report it here: https://cm.maxient.com/reportingform.php?UnivofTennessee&layout_id=21.
UT indicates that “reasonable efforts will be made to protect the confidentiality of the individuals targeted and to maintain the confidentiality requested by the reporting party. The outcome of any reported incident will take into account the confidentiality of the involved parties.” As always, if you are in danger, please call 911.
Finally, please, try to help yourselves and others. Reach out, acknowledge events, ask how you can help, and ask where you can get help. The university has resources as well: https://counselingcenter.utk.edu/clinical-services/counseling-services/
History of Asian American Heritage in the United States
- “Anti-Asian Hate Crime During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Exploring the Reproduction of Inequality” Gover, A.R., Harper, S.B. & Langton, L. Am J Crim Just 45, 647–667 (2020). An article on the history of stigmatization and “othering” of people of Asian descent.
- Asiasociety.org Center for Global Education “Asian Americans Then and Now” https://asiasociety.org/education/asian-americans-then-and-now. This is a GREAT read about the long history of Asian Americans and their role in shaping US identity. The essay also looks at the push-pull factors that have helped define demographic trends in the United States to present day and also covers some darker periods of American history, including the Congressional Exclusionary Act restricting immigration based on race and the internment of Japanese American citizens during WWII. It also introduces you to Angel’s Island on the West Coast. Asiasociety.org
- Black History Always “Why we must talk about the Asian American Story Too” https://theundefeated.com/features/why-we-must-talk-about-the-asian-american-story-too/
- Civilrights.org. The Leadership Conservation Fund “Stop Pointing to Asian Americans to Downplay Racism at Universities.” https://civilrights.org/edfund/resource/stop-pointing-asian-americans-downplay-racism-universities/
- National Geographic “America’s Long History of Scapegoating its Asian Americans” https://www.nationalgeographic.com/history/article/asian-american-racism-covid
- USA Today “Hate crimes: How they affect BIPOC and why they are on the rise” https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/02/27/asian-hate-crimes-attacks-fueled-covid-19-racism-threaten-asians/4566376001/
- Impacts on Health
- American Psychological Association “Racial Discrimination Has Different Mental Health Effects on Asians Depending on Ethnic Identity, Age and Birthplace, Study Shows.” https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2008/05/asian-health. For some individuals, strong ties to their ethnicity can guard against the negative effects of racism. For others, strong ties to ethnicity can actually make the negative effects of discrimination worse.
- Science Daily “Discrimination Increases Against Asian and Asian American Population, affecting Health.” https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/11/201102155412.htm Reports of racial discrimination against Asians and Asian-Americans have increased since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, coinciding with an increase in reported negative health symptoms, according to researchers.
- Impacts on Employment and Education
- U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission “Asian Americans in the American Workforce.” https://www.eeoc.gov/special-report/asian-americans-american-workforce
- NCBI “Experiences of Discrimination among Chinese American Adolescents and the Consequences for Socioemotional and Academic Development”
Asian American Alliance “What You Can do to Help”
- How to Support Asian American Colleagues Amid Recent Wave of anti-Asian Violence: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/19/how-to-support-asian-american-colleagues-amid-anti-asian-violence.html. Actor Harry Shum Jr. has broken the mold of stereotypical characters available to Asian actors. At a time where Hollywood has come under fire for its lack of diverse representation in film production, Shum Jr. says the way to break through is by being your authentic and honest self.
- “Recent attacks on elderly Asian victims are at the center of a rising national dialogue about anti-Asian and Asian-American racism, with the latest incidents coming nearly a year after the pandemic started.”: https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-news/asian-american-racism-violence-1127876/
- CNN “Attacks Against Asian Americans are on the Rise. Here is what you can do.” https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/05/us/how-to-support-the-aapi-community-iyw-trnd/index.html
- Long before health officials had confirmed the first cases of COVID-19 in the United States, acts of discrimination and xenophobia against Asian Americans were rising rapidly. https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/confronting-racism-and-supporting-asian-american-communities-wake-covid-19
- There is an active google doc to help consolidate Asian community and justice organizations, mutual aid links, etc. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1CGLrII9ycdPPcavGkatzGpoqGsdwJm46AgDXVWla3H8/mobilebasic
- If you know of additional resources people should be made aware of, you can send them to the google doc group and/or the EPP Diversity and Inclusion email
For those unfamiliar with recent events against the Asian American community, please see below. Content warning: bias, hate, racism, and violence
- ABC “I am an American Too: Violence Sparks New Grief, Reckoning for Asian Americans” https://abcnews.go.com/US/american-violence-sparks-grief-reckoning-asian-americans/story?id=76204613
- CNBC, “House to Hold Hearing on Rise of Anti-Asian Violence During Covid-19. https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/17/house-to-hold-hearing-on-rise-of-anti-asian-violence-during-covid.html
- CNN, “The History of Attacks Against Asian Americans is Complicated. Addressing it will be too.” https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/04/us/asian-american-racism-violence-response-trnd/index.html
- CNN Politics, “Asian American female lawmakers to testify in House Hearing on violence and discrimination against community.” https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/18/politics/house-judiciary-asian-american-discrimination-hearing/index.html
- Humans Rights Watch, “Anti-Asian Violence in US Demands Response” https://www.hrw.org/news/2021/02/12/anti-asian-violence-us-demands-response
- NBC News, “‘You Have Chinese Virus!:’One in four Asian American youth experience racist bullying.” https://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/25-percent-asian-american-youths-racist-bullying-n1240380
- Anti-Asian Violence in US Demands Response – Human Rights Watch “Cities across the United States are seeing numerous unprovoked attacks against Asian-Americans, particularly older people, according to a new study by a coalition documenting and addressing anti … www.hrw.org
- New York Times “Lesson of the Day: A Rise in Attacks on Asian Americans.” https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/02/learning/lesson-of-the-day-a-rise-in-attacks-on-asian-americans.html In this lesson, you will learn about racism against Asian-Americans, which has increased during the pandemic, and consider what you can do to stop it in your school or community.
- PBS News Hour “Words Matter as Asian American Leaders Urge Action Against Hate Crimes.” https://www.pbs.org/newshour/nation/words-matter-as-asian-american-leaders-urge-action-against-hate-crimes
- PBS News Hour “Asian Americans Face Discrimination During Pandemic” https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/asian-americans-face-a-wave-of-discrimination-during-the-pandemic
- Time “Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans are on the Rise. Many Say More Policing isn’t the Answer.” https://time.com/5938482/asian-american-attacks/
- USA Today, “Hate crimes against Asian Americans are on the rise. Here’s what activist, lawmakers and police are doing to stop the violence.” -19https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/02/27/asian-hate-crimes-attacks-fueled-covid-19-racism-threaten-asians/4566376001/
- Fox News Nearly 3800 incidents of racism against Asian Americans in past year https://www.foxnews.com/us/nearly-3800-incidents-racism-asian-american-past-year-study
- The Washington Post “The long, ugly history of anti-Asian racism and violence in the U.S.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2021/03/18/history-anti-asian-violence-racism/