Huge Crowds Attend ‘Stop Asian Hate’ Rallies in New York, New Jersey
People participate in a protest to demand an end to anti-Asian violence April 4 in New York City. In New Jersey April 10, Indian American state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal spoke about the historical significance of APPI communities and families again being under attack. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
India-West Staff Reporter
Over 10,000 Asian Americans gathered in New York for a “Stop Asian Hate” rally April 4.
The demonstrators assembled at Foley Square in Lower Manhattan and marched to City Hall Park and over the Brooklyn Bridge before ending at Cadman Plaza, reports Xinhua news agency.
Local officials, victims of hate crimes, and people from various ethnic communities participated in the event.
During the event, John Chan, convener of the Coalition of Asian-Americans for Civil Rights, the New York-based Asian American advocacy group, and chairman of Asian American Community Empowerment, lashed out at the inaction of the government in the face of rising anti-Asian hate crimes in New York.
Decrying the government’s silence on Asian hate crimes, Chan encouraged Asian Americans to get registered and cast their votes.
“We’re not begging for respect. We should unite together and make our own decision,” said Chan, adding that too many people now are afraid of walking out of their homes.
He also appealed to the federal government to designate April 4 the “Stop Hate Day.”
Organizers of the rally urged the government to track cases and data on hate crimes, give top priority to the issue, and crack down on hate speeches and actions.
New Yorkers have held more than 10 rallies since the shootings in Atlanta, Georgia, March 16, in which six Asians were killed.
In Jersey City, New Jersey, on April 10, a huge crowd attended a rally in support of the Asian American Pacific Islander community at a “Stop Asian Hate” rally at Jersey City’s City Hall that had appearances from leaders statewide, according to a report on hudsoncoutyview.com.
New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal spoke about the historical significance of APPI communities and families again being under attack.
“I remember growing up in this state when those dotbusters were active, when Navroze Mody was killed not too far from here – when Asian elders were being targeted – how fearful people were to leave their homes or go to their temples or to live their lives,” the Indian American attorney general recalled.
“But what we saw then is what we’re seeing now. That we responded how we are today: by coming together and mobilizing,” he was quoted as saying in the report.
Other dignitaries who spoke included ACLU-NJ executive director Amol Sinha, Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla, and state Assemblyman Raj Mukherji, who stated that the AAPI community has been battling two pandemics over the past year, COVID-19 and hate, citing 4,000 hate incidents against Asian Americans since the onset of the public health emergency.
“Discrimination has actually been an undeniable and unfortunate part of the Asian immigrant experience for a long time, he said.
(With IANS reporting)