The Truth About Attacks On Asians
Recently, there has been a drumbeat of expressed concern by the left — the Democrats and their ever faithful messengers, the press — over a rise in hate crimes committed against Asians. The shooting in Atlanta, in which six of the nine victims were Asian women, brought on a rush to declare this an anti-Asian hate crime. It turned out, however, that the fact that a majority of the victims were Asians had nothing to do with the shooter’s motivation. More recently, the brutal attack, caught on video, of a man shoving an elderly Asian woman to the ground, kicking her several times, and shouting “you don’t belong here” was, indeed, a hate crime. So leftists were palpably anxious to declare it a symptom of their go-to faux bogey, white supremacy. But the facts revealed that the anti-Asian assailant was a black man and a convicted murderer (of his mother!) out on parole. (It is inconvenient for this perfidious white supremacist narrative that blacks have committed a sizeable number of the assaults against Asians.)
Hate crimes against Asians, mainly assaults, have indeed increased in the last year, as has violent crime in general. But even taking the highest estimate of their number I could find, that provided by the left-wing StopAAPIHate, and assuming that all of them were in fact motivated by anti-Asian bias, in absolute terms, the number of such assaults is tiny: 421.
To put that number in perspective, if each of those assaults was committed by a separate person, there would have been only one anti-Asian assaulter per 800,000 people, committing only one such assault in a year. The chance of an Asian suffering an assault at the hands of an anti-Asian bigot would have been considerably less than the chance of being injured taking a bath, and much, much less than the chance of being injured or killed driving a car.
So why is the left so anxious to portray the country as beset by an avalanche of anti-Asian bigotry and violence when the truth is so obviously to the contrary?
There are three reasons.
One reason is power. The left wants Asians to join blacks and Hispanics as reliable votes for Democrats. So it wants Asians to believe what it wants (and has largely succeeded in getting) blacks and Hispanics to believe — namely, that Republicans and their voters are white supremacists who despise them. Although this is a lie, and a big one, when it comes to blacks and Hispanics, it is perhaps an even bigger lie when it comes to Asians. Nonetheless, it has worked to some degree, even with Asians, and so the left keeps repeating it. (One reason it has worked to the extent it has among Asians is that assimilated, non-immigrant, young Asians, anxious to join the ranks of the elite, realize that the elite are now besotted with woke views of race.)
The second reason is embarrassment. Asians are, as a relative matter, the most successful group in America. Their average income exceeds that of whites. Yet many Asians came to this country with little wealth, and few spoke English. Moreover, when they came, they often were the victims of discrimination — and in the case of the Japanese, internment for several years. Yet despite these handicaps, and without governmental solicitude, they have managed to succeed and surpass even whites.
It is no secret how this happened. As a group — and obviously there are individual exceptions — Asians are committed to and exemplify the three core bourgeois values of strong families, hard work, and devotion to education. And their achievements demonstrate that commitment to these values is a path to success far superior to reliance on government largesse. Asians’ success thus embarrasses the left, which stresses government programs, and downplays cultural values, as essential to upward mobility. Inflating the perils facing Asians thus draws attention away from the success Asians have achieved and the cause of that success, and it attempts to convey the false impression that Asians, despite their cultural values, are oppressed rather than successful.
The third reason is deflection. There is anti-Asian discrimination in America, but one of its main sources is a principal bastion of the left: elite universities. Asians are discriminated against in seeking admission to Harvard, Yale, and other elite schools. For example, it is four times more difficult for an Asian to get admitted to Harvard than for a black with comparable high school grades and test scores. And the left is urging the same discrimination against Asians in admission to elite public high schools. So the left wants attention to be drawn away from its own anti-Asian discrimination and focused instead on the minuscule incidence of anti-Asian assaults.
Power, embarrassment, and deflection. These are the reasons the left wants you to believe, contrary to fact, that Asians are in constant danger of bigoted attacks.