Asian discrimination has been around for a very long time, and the discrimination became worse ever since the pandemic. The first case of Covid-19 was discovered in China, resulting in multiple politicians blaming China for the state of the world. The behavior of the powerful political figures influenced bitterness towards the Asian community, and especially to the Chinese. Since then, acts on Asian hate have increased in numbers. These incidents of discrimination don’t happen only on the streets: they happen in the workplace too. In Australia, a survey recorded that 66.4% of Asian Australians were experiencing some form of discrimination in their workplace, which was almost a 15% increase from six months prior. The Asian Australians also had to experience an unreasonable drop in working hours in the spring of 2021. According to the researchers at the Australian National University, the drop in hours for the Asian Australians was more than twice the drop for the non-Asian community. However, this is only skimming the surface of this universal issue.
Sissy Oishi de Lima is one of many victims of Asian discrimination. She was working at a gym when she spotted a man struggling with his equipment. De Lima, a fitness instructor, instinctively headed over to give the man a hand. However, as de Lima approached, the man took a step backward, asking if she was Chinese. “[I thought,] ‘Why are you asking this?’” She told CNN. “Oh, the virus,” she figured and the man replied, “You know how it is.” De Lima was on the verge of crying; she states that “we pretend we don’t care, but it hurts deep inside.” The way the man looked at her was what scarred her the most. She said the man shot a disgusted look: he looked at her as if she was the virus.
Another incident was of Monica, who experienced “racists microaggressions” constantly, ever since she moved to Kuwait half a decade ago. Monica is a native English speaker teacher who grew up in Wales, but some parents, not knowing of this fact, requested for a teacher change because they wanted a native English speaking teacher. Before the pandemic, a coworker showed hostility towards Monica by mocking her with a racist gesture; she pulled her eyes slanted to imitate an Asian stereotype. Even the students have been influenced to discriminate against Asians. A physician came to speak with Monica’s students during class one time. The doctor was talking about coronavirus, and she said “coronavirus – the Chinese people have it.” According to Monica, several students turned back to look at Monica even though she hadn’t reacted to the comment in any way. Monica told CNN, “I was itching to say something, but bear in mind, there were hundreds of students in the hall. I did not want to make a scene.”
As the pandemic rolls on, more and more people are starting to find fault in the Chinese, since that is where the first cases of Covid were detected. But the true pandemic lies underneath: discrimination against the Asian.