Residents Express Fear, Anxiety Amid Recent Anti-Asian Violence

Photo courtesy Joann Lo
For her birthday this year, Joann Lo and her children Dylan and Ashlyn took a trek to visit Griffith Observatory, after remaining home in light of the pandemic last year. At the end of the day, news broke of the Atlanta spa shootings, which included six Asian women among the eight people killed.

Joann Lo admitted that, in recent weeks especially, she’d found a silver lining to the coronavirus pandemic.
Perhaps it was more of an ironic silver lining though, for when asked about how the steady stream of news reports about Asian American and Pacific Islander residents being targeted by harassment or violence was impacting her family, Lo found a bit of comfort in the need to stay at home and minimize trips out into the public.
“In a way, it’s kind of a relief,” the Glendale mother said in a recent interview, “because we’re not out there in spaces to be subject to these comments or attacks.”

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Rise in Anti-Asian Hate Incidents Sparks Grief, Worry

In late January, a Thai man in his 80s was taking a walk in San Francisco when he was violently shoved to the ground. He died days later.
On Feb. 20, a person walking in Burbank told Los Angeles County’s “L.A. vs. Hate” report line that someone driving past had yelled, “You … Asian people spread the virus.”
And on March 16, law enforcement said a 21-year-old man shot and killed eight people, six of whom were Asian women, and injured one other at three Atlanta-area businesses.
Some residents of Burbank, where about 12.1% of the city identifies as Asian, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 estimate, have echoed the national sense of anxiety and mourning over the shooting. But there has been plenty to fear and mourn in the past year amid an escalating number of reported harassment, attacks and discrimination against those in the Asian American and Pacific Islander, or AAPI, community.
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