Hate crime refers to a criminal offense involving individuals or groups of offenders discriminating others based on their religion, race, sexual orientation, disability, gender, or ethnicity. Hate crime is prejudiced expressions which fail to involve threats, damage to property, or violence. Despite possessing this nature, the crime exposes the offenders to hefty penalties because they leave the victims vulnerable and victimized (Shattuck & Risse, 2021).
Therefore, the discriminatorily motivated offense committed and targeted to an individual victimizes them and their immediate community and family; belonging is made vulnerable. Asian hate crime is a contemporary issue affecting many people in the United States (U.S), thus, legislatures and other relevant stakeholders need to formulate strategies of addressing the problem to completely eradicate it.
The United States (U.S.) has witnessed a series of discriminatory motivated behavior linked to hate crime. In the past, hate crimes were not considered to be associated with discriminatory acts. The U.S. government was involved in perpetrating these vices directly through state violence on ethnic and racial minorities. Some historical U.S. hate crimes included slavery, the genocide of Native Americans, anti-Chinese violence, Ku Klux Klan criminal conduct, and lynching (Shattuck & Risse, 2021).
The denial of victims’ legal redress by the government fueled hate crimes. There was a registered increase of hate crime against the Asian during the 9/11 bombing attack (Weiss, 2021). According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) statistics, these hate crimes registered an increase of 59.6% in 2018 due to ethnicity, race, and ancestral discrimination (Shattuck & Risse, 2021). This posed a more significant threat to the Asian people living in the U.S as they became more vulnerable to attacks.
Hate crimes are considered serious forms of prejudice arising within political and social change leading to the devaluing groups being viewed as unfamiliar. New York City comprises 13.95% of Asians, who comprise students, immigrants, and tourists (Weiss, 2021). The occurrence of COVID-19 has witnessed an increase in hate crimes. The former U.S President Donald Trump referred to the virus as the ‘Chinese virus,’ which led to 1,100 reported incidents of hate crimes among the Asian persons living in the country (Man, 2020). The groups made vulnerable by the comment included Sikh, Muslim, Hindu, and South Asian communities.
They were exposed to recurrent cycles of violence and harassment (Weiss, 2021). The recurrent problem of hate crimes needs to be considered since it not only discriminates the victims but also tends to make them vulnerable to life-threatening attacks.
The motivation of hate crimes is associated with violent acts that expose victims to harm physically or mentally. The motivations are color, race, disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender, and national origin (Shattuck & Risse, 2021). It is worth noting that groups of individuals commit hate crimes compared to other forms of criminal activities. Similarly, according to the National Victimization Survey statistics, the targeted victims lay in categories such as 15% were under 17 years; 17% were aged 18 to 29; and 43% surpassed 30 years of age (Shattuck & Risse, 2021). The upsurge in the number of hate crimes against Asians across the U.S during this COVID-19 pandemic period registered 2,100 incidents within 3-month, that is, between March and June of 2020 (Zhang et al., 2021).
This surge has made the issue to be a matter of concern requiring appropriate actions to mitigate and eradicate the recurrent problem. Hate crimes eradication will further remove the elements of discrimination against those who deem to possess different attributes.
The criteria for providing solutions to hate crimes meted on the Asians is essential in mitigating crimes against Asians. The first criterion is the provision of training about hate crimes aiming at offering a solution to the problem is necessary. This training will be realized if there is a created safe platform desiring to safely engage with the conversation of hate crimes meted on the Asian in the U.S. Another criterion entails the utilization and understanding of the law by the citizens. The law provides the best remedy in preventing hate crimes since enacted sections would make hate crimes an offence punishable by any court in the U.S.
Brainstorming Solution Options
Advocating for awareness seeks to build competency by providing expertise in raising awareness among all involved parties lying within a position to ensure hate crimes are mitigated and eradicated in the U.S. The involved parties include the law enforcers, civil society bodies, legal professionals, and policymakers (Gover et al., 2020). These groups will facilitate the sensitization of the U.S population against committing hate crimes, particularly on Asians, since the act is not only punishable by law but also hateful and dehumanizing.
Advocating for awareness is essential since it will ensure an alignment of the national legislative laws on hate crimes to international standards, which the European Council monitors. Similarly, it will facilitate effectiveness in implementing and increasing the levels of public participation in formulating democratic, humanitarian, peaceful, and prosperous laws. The performance of these acts would be essential in mitigating the surging cases of hate crimes against Asians (Gover et al., 2020). The problem likely to be associated with advocating for awareness is the creation of a platform for difficult conversation among the targeted group of persons.
A resolution to the U.S. House of Representatives would garner support from other interested parties. For instance, Meng’s answer received support from 50 professional and scientific bodies, which felt the plight of the Asian people (Weiss, 2021). Similarly, the formation and support of non-governmental organizations such as the Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) provide an opportunity for the victims of hate crimes to make formal complaint reports (Shattuck & Risse, 2021). An individual who witnesses hate crimes against Asians is necessary after undergoing training at the Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC).
Speaking up or bystander intervention by a witness against this crime would involve interrupting, questioning, educating, and reiterating to desist from the act. The act is despicably unacceptable since it dehumanizes Asians (Ramachandran, 2021). Form platforms such as the AAJC for making formal complaints by the victims of hate crimes. The reported hate crimes will require a follow-up entailing investigations, and when the allegations stand, prosecution of the offender would be required (Ramachandran, 2021). The ability and platforms for making formal complaints make the victim’s comfort and confidence restored, pending the follow-up to his or her case.
The best-brainstormed solution to hate crimes in the U.S is the utilization of the desire to advocate for awareness among different stakeholders. Despite being a difficulty conversation, advocating for awareness has various options that seek to conclusively consider all the stakeholders likely to ensure the vice has been eliminated. These numerous options are essential in assisting Asians against being victims of hate crimes in the U.S.
Advocating for awareness has seen the engagement of various parties such as law enforcers and policymakers. With this high number of parties involved in advocating for awareness, it is better placed to assist in eliminating hate crimes. Policymakers will ensure a resolution to the U.S. House of Representatives is formulated to condemn all forms of hate crimes against Asians. For instance, representative Grace Meng has undertaken a similar move on March 25, 2020 (Weiss, 2021).
Similarly, they will formulate laws to safeguard the interest of hate crimes victims (Weiss, 2021). These moves by the U.S House of Representatives seek to establish a lasting solution to hate discrimination against Asians. The law enforcers, who include federal authorities, will partner with local and state officials in investigating the reported hate crimes. In turn, the laxity exhibited by the U.S government towards redressing hate crimes issues against Asians will be an issue of the past (Man, 2020). The awareness of formulated policies and the avenues to seek assistance, such as using law enforcers, will ensure the level of hate crimes reduce tremendously.
Furthermore, awareness is advocated by using legal professionals and civil society bodies. The civil society activism groups would be essential in championing the rights of the Asian people. These groups, such as AAPI and AAJC, are critical for evaluating and determining whether a reported case is considered a hate crime or not. Since they can seek the services of legal professionals, evaluation is easier. They will assist in seeking the legal address of reported cases, therefore making victims aware of their existence (Shattuck & Risse, 2021).
The activist groups would champion frontline awareness of the government’s desire to follow the matter. This arises when the government has resorted to neglecting and perpetrating life-threatening violence against Asian persons (Man, 2020). Speaking up by these groups will aim at supporting reforms in the justice system, which the U.S government has neglected. Adherence to these criteria will avail a lasting solution by sealing loopholes in the legal justice system.
Hate crimes committed on the Asians living in the U.S. have witnessed an upsurge in the past few months. This increase has been associated with the occurrence of the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges that people in the country have experienced due to it. Racial groups and incidences in the past are mainly responsible for the continuous cycles of Asian hate crimes. The recurrent nature of the crime and its effects calls for the need to adopt a working intervention. The brainstormed measures included: advocating for awareness, the presentation of resolutions to the U.S House of Representatives, and forming a non-governmental organization such as AAPI and AAJC.
These measures are considered since they tend to create a platform for addressing hate crimes committed against Asians. The best-considered option is advocating for awareness which has a greater involvement of civil, legal, policy, and law groups to deliberate on the matter relating to hate crimes. The utilization of these measures advocating for awareness is essential to protect Asians and protect the interest of U.S citizens. It is important to recall that the U.S. is a highly diversified country which needs to eradicate vices that compromise the unity of the people. The stipulated laws formulated under advocating for awareness are vital in preventing and mitigating hate crimes against Asians.
Gover, A. R., Harper, S. B., & Langton, L. (2020). Anti-Asian hate crime during the COVID-19 pandemic: Exploring the reproduction of inequality. American Journal of Criminal Justice, 45(4), 647-667. Web.
Man, S. (2020). Anti-Asian violence and US imperialism. Race & Class, 62(2), 24-33. Web.
Ramachandran, V. (2021). What you can do to fight violence and racism against Asian Americans. PBS NewsHour. Web.
Shattuck, J., & Risse, M. (2021). Reimagining rights & Responsibilities in the United States: Freedom of speech and media. SSRN Electronic Journal. Web.
Weiss, P. (2021). A rising tide of hate and violence against Asian Americans in New York during COVID-19: Impact, causes, solutions. [Ebook]. Asian American Bar Association of New York. Web.
Zhang, Y., Zhang, L., & Benton, F. (2021). Hate crimes against Asian Americans. American Journal of Criminal Justice. Web.