Hate crimes against Anti-Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) jumped an astounding 567 percent in San Francisco from 2020 to 2021.
Data released by the San Francisco police department paints a bad reality of hate crimes in the city against its Asian population. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders make up more than 36 percent of the city’s population.
The colossal spike could actually be higher, officials have said, because hate crime incidents are vastly underreported.
The new data comes amid renewed and heightened attention on violence against the Asian community across the United States. Less than a year ago in March 2021, a gunman opened fire at several massage parlors in Atlanta, killing eight people, six of which were Asian women.
Robberies, burglaries, and deadly assaults have been reported against multiple elderly Asian Americans in the city of San Francisco, as well as in nearby Oakland.
Across the United States, hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have seen a huge increase since the Covid pandemic. Between March 2020 and June 2021, the organization Stop AAPI Hate received more than 9,000 reports of anti-Asian attacks.
Hate attacks have ranged from online harassment to verbal harassment to physical assault and even death. Of the 9,081 reports received by Stop AAPI Hate, close to 14 percent of the cases were physical assaults. Nearly nine percent of the cases included a victim being specifically coughed or spat on. The vast majority of all incidents happened in the public.
Experts blame the rise of hate incidents on discriminatory rhetoric from former President Donald Trump. Trump repeatedly used racist terms and slurs when he discussed Covid.
Experts said that Trump’s administration and campaign openly appealed to racist resentment and catered to xenophobia, and just because Trump lost the 2020 election, doesn’t mean that this hate goes away.