To summarize, many Asians and Asian Americans suffer with mental health problems everyday but most of them go unreported. Along with not reporting or doing anything about their mental health problems, they also will sometimes not report any instances in hate crimes and harassments. Asian Americans feel like racism towards their kind is often looked over and ignored. Because of this, many of us end up being too scared to speak up and stand up for ourselves. We have to stand up for ourselves and not hold back. A lot of associations such as the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, condemned anti-Asian American rhetoric. Do not feel like you are alone.
The racism that Asian people face is not a new thing. They have been facing racisms and discrimination for centuries, COVID-19 related harassment is just a recent addition to that. The effects of the Japanese internment camp during World War II and the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882 are still being felt to this day. America just seems to act like nothing that they ever put Asian people through ever happened. The Vietnam War was also a huge reason that Americans continued to be racist towards Asians and Asian Americans. It hasn’t been as bad in the past 15 years until recently when coronavirus made a huge impact all across the world (Ao, 2020). History just seems to keep repeating themselves. Hate speech on social media is just one example out of the many. A study shows from analyzing about one million tweets from November and March show that negative comments about Asian people increased at about 70% (Ao, 2020). With Asian people being blamed for this “Chinese virus,” it really takes a toll on their mental health. Even before coronavirus began, studies show that Asian Americans were considered to be high-risk when it comes to their mental health. Asian-Americans have reported that they are terrified of leaving their own home to go to the grocery story because they are afraid of getting stabbed in the face. Gilbert Gee, a professor at the Fielding School of Public Health at the University of California Los Angeles states that “When people are treated unfairly, it can create a stress response called allostatic load” (Ao, 2020). Allostatic load can affect the body in many negative ways, such as slowly destroying our immune system.
The government needs to do something about this, and the Asian communities would love their support during this hard time. As suggested in the Action post, they should work with Asian American associations on raising awareness and providing mental health care to those affected. Getting taxpayers to help pay for this idea would be a good opportunity as well, but perhaps working with Asian American associations would be the most helpful in spreading the message to a large Asian and Asian American audience. There is not enough cultural mental health services out there to help Asian Americans, but it is very critical to take action and change this immediately.
Ao, B. (2020, April 28). Asian Americans already face a mental health crisis-coronavirus racism could make it worse. Retrieved October 20, 2020, from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-04-asian-americans-mental-health-crisiscoronavirus.html