• Vincent Chin, a Chinese American man, was beaten to death with a baseball bat last June in Detroit by two white auto workers who “mistook” him for Japanese and blamed him for unemployment. The killers were fined a measly $3,780 earlier this year and allowed to walk free with three years probation — a slap on the wrist tantamount to telling them to “go and sin again.”
Only after a nationwide campaign was mounted by Chinese Americans in Detroit did a federal grand jury agree to review the case. In November, the jury indicted Chin’s killers on two counts of federal civil rights violations, a penalty that could bring them life imprisonment.
• Thong Hy Huynh, a Vietnamese refugee attending high school in Davis, California, was knifed to death this spring by a fellow student who prefaced the murder with racist slurs.
• Kampuchean activist An Pech was bludgeoned to death on the porch of his Dallas apartment in July by an unidentified Black man. Neighbors stated that tension ran high between poor Blacks and refugees jammed together in the neighborhood.
• Sae Cheo Muang, an elder Southeast Asian woman, was discovered hanging from a tree in Pomona, California in late August. Onlookers merely stared and giggled. Police were quick to call her death “suicide.”
• Francis Chu, a 20-year-old Chinese American man, was beaten by several New York City cops after a minor traffic accident on July 19. The beating is just one of over a dozen reported attacks on Asian Americans and immigrants by NYC police over the last two years .
• On July 24 a Vietnamese man, Anh Mai, was slashed to death in his Boston home and three of his roommates were injured when they asked a noisy group outside the house to quiet down. So far this year there have been 16 recorded harassments and assaults against Asian immigrants in Boston. These atrocities are only the latest in a long, ugly history of violence against Asian/Pacific Americans and immigrants. If allowed to continue, we are in for another wave of the “Yellow Peril” hysteria that has disfigured U.S. society for much of the last 140 years.