Several University of Miami “experts” have jumped in to point the finger at the “intersection of racism and sexism” for the killings of several women in Atlanta.
On March 16, suspect Robert Aaron Long shot and killed eight females, six of whom were of Asian descent.
According to [email protected], Gender and Sexuality Studies Lecturer Claire Oueslati-Porter said Long was “engaged in white supremacist patriarchal violence” when he killed the women.
In response to reports that Long did not harbor any racist intent, Oueslati-Porter said “a lot of racism isn’t understood as such by the racist.” She added there should be an examination of “the imperial relations of power between the USA and Asian countries, beyond popular representations,” an example being how the U.S. military has “hypersexualized” Asian women.
Films such as 1987’s Full Metal Jacket, which follows several Marines from boot camp through action Vietnam, exacerbate such hypersexualization, Oueslati-Porter added.
U. Miami Law Professor Donna Coker noted violence such as Long’s “can be racially and gendered motivated—that is, racialized misogyny.” Picking up on Oueslati-Porter’s point, Coker said there is a long history of “white men fetishizing Asian women” and “presuming them to be sexually available.”
While the Atlanta massacre has shocked the nation, acts of hate against Asians and Asian Americans actually “are as old as our nation,” said M. Evelina Galang, an American novelist and activist of Filipina descent who is a professor in the University of Miami’s Creative Writing Program.
“We need only look at the 1871 lynching of 18 Chinese in Los Angeles, the 120,000 Japanese Americans placed in U.S. internment camps during World War II, the brutal 1926 beatings and stabbing of Filipinos in Stockton California, the 1982 murder of Vincent Chin, and most recently the beatings of our Asian American elders during the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said. …
[S]ome experts say Asian Americans can find inspiration in the Black Lives Matter movement that has been so vocal since the George Floyd killing.
“We have to find something that can come out of this, and I think the linkage to the BLM movement is a good analogy,” said Alex Piquero, professor and chair of the Department of Sociology in the College of Arts and Sciences and a leading authority on criminology and criminal justice. “Especially since the Spring of 2020, Asians and Asian Americans have seen a lot of negativity and violence aimed at them at no fault of their own,” he said.
Oueslati-Porter et. al. are but the latest to further the theme that Long, and the country at large, are incorrigibly racist. In contrast, the more recent killings of ten — white — people in Boulder, Colorado by a Syrian immigrant do not seem to be on many academics’ radar.
IMAGE: Kat Blaque / YouTube screencap