It has been a violent start to 2023. 11 people in California, most identifying as Chinese American, were killed as they celebrated the Lunar New Year in Monterey Park, an enclave in California for a robust Asian American community. Then in Half Moon Bay, seven farm workers were gunned down.
This violence, which has claimed so many Asian Americans, comes in the wake of anti-Asian violence and racism that has spiked during the pandemic. The Monterey Park mass shooting carries the additional tragedy of occurring as folks celebrated the Lunar New Year. Connie Wun, co-founder of the AAPI Women Lead organization, described how in some Asian cultures, what happens at the start of the Lunar New Year indicates what will happen for the rest of the year. This casts an ominous shadow on the year for many Asian Americans.
In this moment, we offer our thoughts and condolences and re-commit our support to those in our community who identify as Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander. We lift you up as we continue in this new year.