kunc-header-1440x90.png
Our Story Happens Here
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

When Is Racial Harassment Considered A Hate Crime?

A protester holds a sign during a rally in solidarity with Asian hate crime victims outside of the San Francisco Hall of Justice in San Francisco, California.
A protester holds a sign during a rally in solidarity with Asian hate crime victims outside of the San Francisco Hall of Justice in San Francisco, California.

The deadly shooting in Atlanta isn’t being prosecuted as a hate crime, at least for now. This is despite a wave of attacks on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders over the last year, in part due to racist messaging about China, Asia and the source of COVID-19.

It’s part of a larger trend of racism and bigotry that members of the AAPI community say has always been brewing just beneath the surface of American society.

From The New York Times:

the wide ideological and generational differences within a group that encompasses dozens of ethnicities. There are about 1.2 million Asians in New York City, according to census data, making up 14 percent of the city’s population.

boosting funding for the New York Police Department to investigate attacks against Asians.

opposed these proposals, saying more policing could harm their own communities, worsen racial tensions and disproportionately target the Black and Latino communities that have long dealt with aggressive policing.

When does racist harassment qualify as a hate crime? And who decides?

Copyright 2021 WAMU 88.5. To see more, visit WAMU 88.5.