March 16, 2021 - Tragedy in Atlanta

Dear APAMSA community:

Less than 24 hours after the release of our Anti-Asian Racism Toolkit, we were horrified by the news out of Atlanta: 8 people murdered by a white terrorist who deliberately targeted Asian-owned massage parlors. 6 of the victims Asian women. The names we know so far:

Xiaojie Tan, 49

Daoyou Feng, 44

Julie Park, 70s

Hyeon Jeong Park, 50s

Delaina Ashley Yaun, 33

Paul Andre Michels, 54

Two yet unreleased

Today, we mourn these women who could be our sisters, mothers, aunts. We mourn the communities they represent: femme, low income/working class, the elderly, immigrant -- the most vulnerable in our communities. We grieve the loss of their lives individually - wishing them peace as they join our ancestors. We also grieve the loss of their lives as our collective loss, tear drops added to the expanding pool of lives claimed by White supremacy and anti-Asian hate.

That hate did not end after it took these women’s lives. It continues with the denial that this crime was racially motivated, that the murderer deliberately and methodically targeted Asian businesses and Asian workers. It continues with the narrative that minimizes his motive by claiming he had a “bad day,” a “sex addiction,” by taking him at face value when he says he “isn’t racist” instead of judging him by his actions. It continues with our erasure from American history, the silence of our medical education leaders, our exclusion from curricula that claims to teach us how to care for all patients and initiatives that proclaim to center equity.

In the face of this hatred, we send love to you all, our community grieving and in pain. It is absurd that we must bear these tragedies on top of the neverending parade of exams, clerkships, research applications, residency applications, and more. National APAMSA is here for you, and we want to emphasize that we will support you in asking your institutions for time off, for protection, for space to be human.

Sharing a post from @asiansformentalhealth on Instagram with the text:

"Dear AAPI family, As you hear the news of the attacks in Atlanta, please sit down. Please give your weary soul time to breathe and catch up. Please turn off your phones and turn inward toward those you love. Please grieve, cry, wail, and exhale. Give your body the space to acknowledge the pain that you have been carrying for so long."

In solidarity,

Your APAMSA family