The Absurd, Racist, and Unfounded Fears at the Core of Islamophobia

The December 9th cover of the New York Daily News, depicting Donald Trump beheading the Statue of Liberty. (Photo credit: NY Daily News)
The December 9th cover of the New York Daily News, depicting Donald Trump beheading the Statue of Liberty. (Photo credit: NY Daily News)

So, I’m on a roll this week, posting about why I believe we — as Asian Americans, as Americans, and as moral human beings — have a responsibility to stand up against the growing tide of Islamophobia that has swept this nation and flooded social media with stories of fearful Muslims facing disgusting forms of harassment.

On Monday, I connected this country’s remembrance of Pearl Harbour with the anti-Japanese xenophobia that followed, and urged readers to see the similarities between racist fears of World War II and today’s Islamophobia. On Tuesday, I reacted to GOP front-runner Donald Trump’s announced proposal to ban all Muslim travel with my comparison between Trump and noted turn-of-the-century Sinophobic race-baiter, Denis Kearney. Again, I urged readers to parallel the era’s anti-Chinese hatred with today’s intolerance of our Muslim American neighbours.  Both of these post went pretty viral this week, and thanks to you, readers, for that!

Continue reading “The Absurd, Racist, and Unfounded Fears at the Core of Islamophobia”

Third Victim of Boston Marathon Bombing Was Chinese National and Boston University Graduate Student

 

Lu Lingzi, in a photo she shared of herself on social media websites.
The third victim in a photo she shared of herself on social media websites.

The third victim of Monday’s devastating Boston Marathon bombing has finally been identified (sort of): she was a Chinese national originally from Shenyang, and was in the United States enrolled as a graduate student at Boston University studying Mathematics and Statistics. She was at the Boston Marathon on Monday, along with two friends, to watch runners cross the finish line.

Some online news sites and blogs have identified the victim as Lu Lingzi, however CNN has failed to confirm that name out of respect for the family’s request that the victim not be identified, and Boston University tweeted that those reports are wrong and that the name is not correct.

Nonetheless, Boston University has already held a candlelit vigil, remembering the third victim along with the other two who lost their lives in the bombing: Krystle Campbell, 29, and Martin Richard, 8. The Chinese consulate has also issued the following statement:

The Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China confirms that one Chinese citizen was unfortunately killed in the Boston Marathon Bombing on April 15th 2013. At the request of her family, the victim’s personal information will not be disclosed. Another Chinese citizen is among the injured and is in stable condition now after surgery.

The Consulate dispatched a work team to Boston after the bombing, headed by Deputy Consul General Ruiming Zhong. The team visited the injured in hospital this morning.

The Consulate has contacted the two families and will provide all neccessary assistance to them.

Our hearts go out to the families of the victims of this terrible tragedy.

CNN also reports that thousands have posted messages of support on the victim’s final post on Weibo, which shows the graduate student enjoying a simple breakfast of fruit and bread the morning of the Boston Marathon.

Boston University has also confirmed that one of the victim’s friends, Zhou Danling, also a student at BU and a Chinese national, was wounded on Monday. The third friend was apparently uninjured.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the families of all the victims of Monday’s horrific attack.