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Daniel Dae Kim, Awkwafina among celebs speaking up against Asian-targeted hate crimes

Numerous celebrities, including Olivia Munn and Lana Condor, have been bringing attention to the issue, with the sentiments currently heightened after the recent shooting in Atlanta, USA.

Daniel Dae Kim, Awkwafina among celebs speaking up against Asian-targeted hate crimes

Daniel Dae Kim and Awkwafina are among the celebrities who have spoken up against the number of hate crimes against Asians. (Photo: Jeremy Chan / Matt Winkelmeyer / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

Asian American celebrities have joined a chorus of voices of people who are speaking up against the increasing number of crimes against the Asian community in the United States. The sentiment is especially heightened after the recent shooting in Atlanta, where six out of the eight victims killed were Asian.

In recent days, hashtags such as #StopAAPIHate and #StopAsianHate have been trending online. AAPI stands for Asian American Pacific Islanders.

Actor Daniel Dae Kim, known for his roles in Hawaii Five-O and Lost, expressed his frustration on Twitter regarding the shooting. He wrote: “The race of the person committing the crime matters less than the simple fact that if you act with hate in your heart, you are part of the problem. And to those with the power to help and yet sit idly by, your silence is complicity. #StopAsianHate”.

Kim has been outspoken in his advocacy and – together with actor Daniel Wu – has even offered rewards for information on crimes that have taken place in San Francisco in recent months, especially those targeting the elderly.

READ: X-Men star Olivia Munn speaks out after friend's Asian mum hurt in shoving

READ: Daniel Wu, Daniel Dae Kim offer US$25,000 reward to catch suspect who assaulted old man

Actress Olivia Munn is another active advocate in the #StopAAPIHate and #StopAsianHate movement. Her Twitter feed has numerous posts regarding the issue and in response to the shooting, she wrote: “The violent attacks and murders against Asians are still happening. Please help us. We need help to be safe in our country. #StopAsianHate. Please”.

Olivia Munn at the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party following the 92nd annual Oscars at The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills on February 9, 2020. (Photo: Jean-Baptiste Lacroix / AFP)

Meanwhile, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before star Lana Condor urged her Twitter followers to stand together and support Asian Americans. “Wake up... your Asian friends and family are deeply scared, horrified, sick to their stomachs and wildly angry,” she wrote.

“Please please please check in on us, please please please stand with us. Please. Your Asian friend needs you, even if they aren’t publicly grieving on social media. X” 

A visibly emotional Ashley Park posted a video almost six minutes long on Instagram to talk about the toll caused by the increasing violence against the community. The Emily in Paris star said in the video, "The amount of times in my life that I've been asked where I'm from before what my name is …  I'm okay but you don't understand – or you do understand – the undervaluing that does". 

English actress Gemma Chan also condemned the hate crimes. The Crazy Rich Asians and The Eternals star wrote on Instagram: “We need to stop the dehumanization of Asians. We need to stop the scapegoating of Asians for COVID. We need to unite against all forms of hate. Please spread awareness, check in on your Asian friends because we are not ok.. educate yourself and others on the model minority myth and the long history of anti-Asian racism…Please don’t be silent”.

Numerous Asian American celebrities have been trying to bring attention to the issue in recent months. Many were unhappy that attacks against the Asian American community hadn't been widely covered in the media. 

In February, Raya And The Last Dragon star Awkwafina showed her support for organisations fighting for the cause. “I am saddened, disturbed and devastated at the recent string of attacks against the Asian American community, and against our elders,” the 32-year-old actress wrote in her Instagram caption. “So for the YEAR OF THE OX, I’m giving the proverbial red envelope (only numbers with 8s) to some organizations that have done amazing work for social and racial justice.” 

Actor-comedian Ken Jeong also spoke in a video by Brave New Films that is part in the #StopAsianHate movement. “We must stop the xenophobia, we must stop the racism, we must stop the hate,” the judge of The Masked Singer said. 

And it’s not just those in the entertainment industry who are expressing support. NBA player Jeremy Lin also shared an encouraging message on his Twitter account: “To my Asian American family, please take time to grieve but know you're loved, seen and IMPORTANT. We have to keep standing up, speaking out, rallying together and fighting for change. We cannot lose hope!!" 

Source: CNA/sr