Photo Credit: David Ryder/Getty Images

(March 18th, 2021) The horrific and xenophobic attack against the Asian American community in Atlanta, Georgia paints a dark picture of the increased bigotry and violence this community has faced nationwide. Our history as a country is deeply embedded in white supremacy and xenophobic attitudes that fostered Anti-Asian hate, including the Chinese Exlusion Act and the Japanese Internment camps. 

On March 16th, a white male targeted three different businesses in Atlanta killing eight people; six of the victims were reported to be Asian. This mass shooting also comes at the intersection of race and gender, with seven of the victims reported to be women. 

The Muslim American Society stands in strong solidarity with the Asian American community in the face of such tragedy and increased violence since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Hateful rhetoric and vitriol has a direct impact,” said Ayman Hammous, Executive Director of MAS.  “The increased bigotry the Asian American community faces across the nation must be confronted and dealt with, following the lead of Asian American organizers on the ground. We all have a responsibility to act and do our part.”

Ismahan Abdullahi, MAS’ Director of Public Affairs and Civic Engagement (PACE) calls on the attack to be investigated as a hate crime.“Our hearts are with the Asian American community nationwide and those who lost loved ones in this senseless, racist and anti-Asian violence that is deeply rooted in white supremacy. We must not be silent nor complicit in the face of hate,” she said. 

The Muslim American Society condemns all forms of hate, including anti-Asian racism, anti-Blackness, Islamophobia, xenophobia, etc. We must be bold in confronting incendiary rhetoric that leads to harm and violence in communities of color.