Jeremy Lin is, naturally, angry when seeing recent videos of attacks against Asian Americans in the United States.
Why wouldn’t he be? The Santa Cruz Warriors guard and former NBA star is one of the most prominent Chinese Americans to ever play in the league, so the recent rise in hate crimes against Asians in the country naturally hits home.
Yet each time he watches a new video of a seemingly random attack, Lin doesn’t stay angry for long. Quickly, he just gets sad.
“After a while, I feel bad,” Lin said, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “I feel bad for someone who harbors hate for somebody else who they’ve never met just based on skin color or, I don’t even know. It makes me want to do something and it makes me want to educate people, or I don’t know, speak out and find ways to make a difference. Honestly it goes from anger to just heartbreak.”
Lin had criticized Donald Trump’s language
Hate crimes and attacks against Asian Americans in the United States started rising at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, something largely blamed on former President Donald Trump and other politicians.
Trump and others repeatedly used terms like the “Chinese Virus” and even the “Kung Flu” when referring to the coronavirus, something widely seen as racist.
Lin slammed Trump for his language on Twitter last year, and blamed him for “empowering” racism throughout the country.
“And I don’t wanna hear about no German measles/Spanish flu bc everyday Asian-Americans inc ppl I know are threatened and physically attacked,” Lin wrote on Twitter last year. “I don’t give a crap about the history of names [right now]. What I do know is this subtle anti-Chinese message only empowers more hate towards Asians.”
The FBI officially reported more than 7,300 hate crimes in the United States in 2019, according to the Washington Post. While that number is the most seen in a decade, many say the figure is far too low and inaccurate — as many law enforcement agencies either aren’t collecting the data or are not participating fully in collection efforts.
The rise in hate crimes directed at Asians in the country led to Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) to call this a “crisis point” in the United States” due to the “alarming surge of anti-Asian bigotry across the nation,” per the report.
Lin returned to the United States after a stint in China, and joined the Warriors’ G-League affiliate in his quest to make it back to the NBA. In order for things to get better culturally, the 32-year-old said Tuesday, it’s going to take much more than just Asians like himself speaking out.
“I’ve always said that in the long run, it can’t only be Asians caring about Asian issues, or African Americans caring about African American issues,” Lin said, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “If, as minorities, we want the majority to understand what it’s like to live a minority experience, and to sympathize and change, we as minorities also have to collaborate, unify and use our voices and stand up for each other. There has to be solidarity on that front.”
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