The statements below are available on the NCA Anti-Racism Resource Bank, along with other statements related to recent events.
NCA Officers' Statement Condemning Anti-Asian Violence
More than a year ago (March 19, 2020), in the early phases of the pandemic’s spread in the United States, the National Communication Association (NCA) published a statement “to amplify the concerns expressed by other scholarly associations, notably, the Association for Asian American Studies (AAAS) concerning the dangerous and pernicious racial/ethnic stereotyping evident in some coverage and communication about COVID-19 in the public realm.” NCA also noted in that statement that “we stand firm in rejecting anti-Asian bigotry in the guise of people expressing fear of Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19” and noted that these beliefs “are rooted in a history of Yellow Peril rhetoric, xenophobia, ableism, and anti-Asian racism.” Then, on March 24, 2020, NCA hosted an off-schedule podcast episode (Communication Matters) that featured Professor Jennifer Ho (University of Colorado), current President of AAAS, who discussed the history of anti-Asian racism and violence in the United States. In that conversation, Dr. Ho noted that she knew, given that history, that “it was only a matter of time that we would see a real spike in harassment and violence” against Asians. On April 16th, 2020 NCA co-signed a letter to members of Congress sent by The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (co-authored by the Democracy Initiative) that “denounce[d] the continued increase in racist attacks and discrimination against the Asian American community.”
During this past year, we have witnessed rampant violence, harassment, and hate directed toward Asian people. A recent report by “Stop AAPI Hate'' catalogued 3,795 hate incidents in the United States against Asian Americans since March 2020. Following the murder of six Asian women, along with two other people in Atlanta, Georgia, on March 16, 2021, Immediate Past President Kent A. Ono shared his scholarly expertise with a number of media outlets. Across these conversations, Professor Ono noted the lack of media coverage of the slain women and said the victims “are constructed as if their lives don’t matter...as if they are un-deserving,” which he described as a “critical component of racism.”
NCA has endorsed statements condemning anti-Asian violence, has dedicated materials focused on promoting solidarity with Asian American communities and on combating violence targeting them, and has promoted the work of our members in such pursuits. Despite these many activities and because of the continuing, daily incidents of hateful violence against Asian American people, we feel the need to offer a statement as an Association, further condemning anti-Asian hatred and violence and reaffirming our dedication to combat it.
NCA stands with Asian American people at this most difficult time and decries in the strongest possible manner the tragic incidents of hate-filled violence occurring across the United States. Such actions, in addition to anti-Asian rhetoric, promote fear and produce psycho-social effects on Asian American people, as well as on those outside of the community. In her appearance on our podcast nearly a year ago, Professor Ho called on each of us to reach out to Asian American friends, colleagues, and students in kindness and co-conspiratorial allyship. NCA pledges itself to combating anti-Asian rhetorics and anti-Asian violence and renewing the Association’s ongoing beliefs in ethical, free, and democratic communication.
We vehemently condemn the anti-Asian violence that has recently been perpetrated across the nation and we repudiate the rhetorics that have motivated and given rise to this violence. We are committed to the pursuit of intentional, reflective, and systemic actions to mitigate and alleviate such rhetorics and such violence, both in the Association and in the larger public realm. NCA again rededicates itself fully to the values expressed in its Credo for Free and Responsible Communication in a Democratic Society and its Resolution Condemning White Supremacy in Political Discourse. We are also committed to the principle that such values must be linked to action and therefore will dedicate our expertise and resources to efforts that contribute to the pursuit of justice and the condemnation of communication that promotes this hatred, intolerance, and violence.
Among the many things we are hoping to do to help as an Association are: (1) to host an NCA convention panel that discusses bystander training pedagogy; (2) to host a workshop for journalists covering stories about anti-Asian violence; (3) to host a First Vice Presidential NCA convention panel on anti-Asian violence; (4) to foreground more centrally the role of communication research in helping understand and diminish anti-Asian violence; and (5) to work closely with the Asian Pacific American Caucus and Studies Division on joint programming and in any other ways to coordinate our efforts. Furthermore, we will continue to explore responses that can put more action behind the words we have written here and to think of other ways to stand with Asian Americans.
David McMahan, NCA President
Roseann Mandziuk, NCA 1st Vice President
Walid Afifi, NCA 2nd Vice President
Kent A. Ono, NCA Immediate Past President
ACLS Statement Condemning Anti-Asian Violence
ACLS is angry and saddened by the recent increase in incidents of violence against Asians and people of Asian descent in the United States and around the world.
We find ourselves in a moment where, for good reason, we and many other Americans have been and continue to be focused intently on anti-Black racism. But we are reminded by the horrific events in Georgia this week and increased acts of violence over this past year linked to the COVID-19 pandemic, of the deep prejudices affecting Asians in this country. These and other attacks against the Asian-American community represent the latest chapter in our history of xenophobia, which tends to flare during times of crisis.
As an organization invested in supporting and advancing the study of what it means to be human, we believe the humanities and social sciences provide essential learning needed to unlock understanding of our historical pasts, good and bad, and help cultivate knowledgeable empathy for all of us in the present and the future.
ACLS is committed to elevating perspectives on the human experience that have traditionally been marginalized or ignored. Our work and practices are firmly grounded in values led by inclusive excellence and anti-racism.
We encourage educators, lawmakers, and community leaders to take this moment to listen closely to Asian and Asian-American voices and work with them in stemming this latest scourge of prejudice and violence. In the coming days, we will launch a new scholarly resource page focused on histories of anti-Asian bias, as well as the movements that have stood against them. This new page will appear as part of the “Race and Society” resource we first published in Summer 2020.
Our thoughts are with the families of the victims and with the communities impacted, including members of our ACLS family, among which there are many scholars and students of Asian history and life, as well as staff, members, and partners carrying the extra burden of processing these hateful events personally while being asked to operate normally on other fronts.
We commit to learning more and we encourage you to learn more about ways to support anti-violence and anti-hate efforts against the Asian community:
Visit the ACLS website for a full list of ACLS Member Societies who have signed on to this statement, including NCA.
The Korean American Communication Association’s Official Statement Condemning Violence Against Asians, March 19, 2021
We are shocked and terrified by the horrific shootings that happened in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday. The fact that this happened in multiple locations indicates that this may have been a deliberate attempt to target a particular group of Asians. No words can describe its gravity and negative impact on our communities, regardless of one’s gender, race, ethnicity, or different backgrounds.
Our hearts go out to the families and friends of those who lost their lives. We express our deepest condolences. The sorrow and agony that this tragedy brings, to those who are directly affected, is unfathomable.
Although the shooter’s motives for killing innocent people have not been fully determined, six Asian women were among the eight victims. We know such a crime highlights a sense of vulnerability that our Asian American Communities have endured for so long. To make the matter worse, we fear that a continuous spike in hate crimes against Asians, that has escalated since the beginning of the pandemic in this country, will continuously create anxiety and helplessness among many who care deeply about building safe environments for our children.
The most concerning issue of our time is that racism is pervasive and violence against Asians, particularly a vulnerable group of women and seniors, has increased rapidly since the COVID-19 pandemic began. However, racism against Asians has been trivialized. Asian Americans are invisible because our sufferings tend to be localized/internalized as individual problems. We are often stereotyped as one of the successful minorities (i.e., a model minority). The hardship and discrimination we experience as Asian Americans everyday gets ignored and easily forgotten. Generation after generation, Asian Americans have been considered as perpetual foreigners in our own country due to our race.
Furthermore, the Atlanta shootings are a stark reminder that race, class, and gender are intersectional. Public debate is centered around whether this was a crime of racial motivations or a crime of sexualized motivations. Regardless, this is a crime of hate inflicted on every sister, mother, and daughter of our Asian-American community. We condemn the exoticization and misogyny toward Asian women, particularly those who work in service occupations.
We, the Korean American Communication Association, on behalf of 700 Korean American current and future communication scholars and professionals, strongly condemn any shape of violence and injustice perpetuated against Asians and other minorities. We cannot and will not accept the fact that we are living in a society where people are harassed or killed because of their skin color, gender, sexual orientation, or the undue prejudice of others.
We are in strong solidarity with all the people in this country who are against racism and bigotry toward any people of color and other communities.
We strongly demand that the government/institutions be accountable to bring real change and progress on the path to eradicate racism and other injustices.
African American Communication and Culture Division and Black Caucus Combined Statement Condemning Recent Violent Acts in Atlanta, and Colorado
On behalf of the African American Communication and Culture Division and the Black Caucus, we would like to express our solidarity with Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities. We are horrified by the deadly attacks that took place in Atlanta and elsewhere in the United States and recognize them as just the latest in a long history of white supremacists wreaking havoc and other racist violence that has only increased during the pandemic. We stand emphatically against xenophobia, racism, and white supremacy and the resultant ills, including the senseless murders of innocent people. We condemn these assaults and all hate crimes, noting that under white supremacy, the fates of Black, Latinx, Indigenous, and AAPI communities are conjoined. Far beyond what any statement could convey, we actively aim for a peaceful existence for all. We unabashedly assert that our shared human experiences are much greater than that which divides us. We seek unity based on the principles of truth, justice, equity, and understanding. As we continue to process the tragedy in Atlanta, we are faced with yet another act of gun violence. In the spirit of peace, service, and with compassion-filled hearts, we grieve for and, along with all, directly impacted by these tragic events, including the recent mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado. We send our collective condolences to the families of all the victims of these senseless attacks. We also send a special expression of support towards the AAPI members of our AACCD, Black Caucus, and extended communities. We pray for the continued healing of our nation and world.
African American Communication and Culture Division:
Chair: Jayne Cubbage
Vice Chair: Anita Mixon
Vice Chair Elect: Dianna Watkins-Dickerson
Immediate Past Chair: Shardé M. Davis
Secretary: Jenny Korn
Treasurer: Morgan Smalls
Chair: Creshema Murray
Vice-Chair: Nickesia Gordon
Vice-Chair-Elect: Kevin Rudrow
Immediate Past Chair: Ashley Hall
Secretary: Dana Seay
Kandace Harris, Public Relations Chair
Badu Smith, Parliamentarian
Natonya Listach, IDEA Council Rep