On April 8, Alex Daniels of The Chronicle of Philanthropy details the response of funders who have played a critical role in reinvesting in divested communities. The determination of which communities exactly are divested from has unfortunately been part of the larger picture of how woefully underprepared, under-resourced and misunderstood Asian Americans and Asian as a socially constructed race actually are.
Quick Rose Garden Recap: President Trump — on the heels of the hearings calling for his impeachment — launched an immediate campaign to rebrand the novel virus COVID-19, one of several coronaviruses, as the “China Virus” or “Wuhan Virus.” One of his aides was said to have called it the “Kung Flu” to a Chinese American Washington Post reporter and then this whole conspiracy happened:
The Washington Post reports:
While the president recently read a statement asking Americans to protect Asian Americans from racist attacks, saying they’re not to blame for the virus, his son Donald Trump Jr. shortly thereafter posted a “Kung-Flu Kid” video of his father crane-kicking the coronavirus. And just last week, the Group of Seven could not reach an agreement on a joint statement about the pandemic because the Trump administration insisted on referring to covid-19 as the “Wuhan Virus” — a term other world leaders rejected as needlessly divisive.
These racial “dog whistles” — including linking outgroups with germs and disease — are part of a long political history of demonizing foreigners as threatening and dangerous. Anecdotally, these racial appeals appear to be having real social and political consequences. In the early stages of the pandemic, before the general lockdowns, the news media reported significant drops in visits to Chinese restaurants. More recently, Asian Americans are increasingly reporting being verbally or physically attacked.
Ironically, they also say “The U.S. has an ugly history of blaming foreigners for disease” and “xenophobia” (emphasis added) to describe hate crimes against Asian Americans. 🤦🏻♀️ Luckily, the day before Trump said “It’s going to disappear. One day — it’s like a miracle — it will disappear” at a White House meeting with African American leaders, the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) tweeted this letter: