By Lee Ann O’Neal | 25 March 2021
REAL CLEAR POLITICS — Before the next of kin were even notified in the horrific shootings last week at three Atlanta-area massage parlors, the narrative was established: The fact that six of the eight victims were Asian women provides the proof that a “surge in hate crimes” against Asian Americans has bubbled up in the U.S. in response to the coronavirus pandemic. That fits neatly with the view of some Americans that our society, at its heart, is racist.
For contrast, consider the mass shooting this week in Boulder, Colo., in which the suspect is Syrian American. Even though all the victims were of the same race, no one assumes without proof that he was acting out of racial animosity because, of course, they were white. In Atlanta, the shooter killed two white people and injured a Latino. But the killings must still be motivated by anti-Asian hatred, right?
“Racially motivated violence must be called out for exactly what it is — and we must stop making excuses or rebranding it as economic anxiety or sexual addiction,” Rep. Marilyn Strickland (pictured) told members of the House a day after the Atlanta shootings. In a CNN interview, Strickland, whose heritage is both African American and Korean American, called the incident a racially motivated hate crime. […]