Guardian US reporter Vivian Ho talks to Rachel Humphreys about the rise in anti-Asian hate crime in the US. In late January, a video of a man shoving a 91-year-old Asian man to the sidewalk in Oakland’s Chinatown went viral, with high-profile Asian Americans such as the actors Daniel Dae Kim and Daniel Wu posting about the attack on social media. With the attention, celebrities highlighted the killing of 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee, a Thai grandfather who died after a teenager allegedly shoved him to the ground in San Francisco a week earlier. The violence has left many Asian Americans across the country feeling targeted, wondering whether these are random acts of crime – or fuelled by anti-Asian bias. This history of racism date back many centuries, Adrian De Leon, assistant professor of American studies and ethnicity at the University of Southern California, tells Rachel.

Rachel also talks to Cynthia Choi, the co-executive director of Chinese for Affirmative Action. At the start of 2020, as Covid-19 was spreading across the world, Cynthia and her team began to hear reports from Asian Americans who said they’d been attacked and had racial slurs thrown at them about the virus. In March last year, they started to collect reports, and working as part of a coalition called Stop AAPI Hate, they documented what Asian Americans across the US were going through. AAPI say that they have recorded thousands of incidents in the past 12 months.

Demonstrators take part in a rally to raise awareness of anti-Asian violence, near Chinatown in Los Angeles, California

Photograph: Ringo Chiu/AFP/Getty Images

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