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Governor joins 18 other governors in statement against racism, urges uniting against bigotry

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

Gov. Andy Beshear joined 18 other governors to issue a statement on the rise in anti-Asian hate, and urged organizations, companies and individuals to participate in a virtual day of action.

The announcement was made on Friday because March 26, 1790 was the date of the signing of the Naturalization Act into law, prohibiting non-white people from becoming U.S. citizens. Now, 231 years later, racism towards the Asian community persists and is on the rise.

“Anti-Asian violence and racism have no place in our Commonwealth or our country,” said Gov. Beshear. “Ending Anti-Asian violence and racism starts with Kentuckians speaking up, and I ask everyone to join with me to show solidarity and stand against hate.”

The joint statement from the governors read:

“As governors we take care in protecting the people of our states. The tragic loss of loved ones in Atlanta that left eight people dead, including six Asian Americans, is part of a long and painful litany of acts of hate against Asian Americans across the country.

“Today, and every day, we stand in solidarity, in support, and in shared resolve with the Asian American community.  Hate will not divide our states and our communities, and we condemn all expressions of racism, xenophobia, scapegoating, and anti-Asian sentiment.

“From the Chinese Exclusion Act to the incarceration of Japanese Americans in World War II to the mistreatment of Muslims and Sikhs after 9/11, this year is part of a history of racism against the Asian American community.

“In the past year, the use of anti-Asian rhetoric during the pandemic has resulted in Asian Americans being harassed, assaulted, and scapegoated for the COVID-19 pandemic.  The Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University in San Bernardino released findings in early March that showed hate crimes against Asian-Americans spiked 149% from 2019 to 2020, even while hate crimes fell overall.

“What is happening to Asian Americans is simply un-American. We condemn racism, violence, and hatred against our AAPI communities, and we must do more to protect, lift up, and support the Asian American community.”

To learn more about how to participate in the virtual day of action to #StopAsianHate, click here.

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