Addressing problems in society often involves coming together as a community. Finding this common ground to progress is crucially important in the development and growth of a society.
On March 27th, 2021, Princeton did just that as a Stop Asian Hate rally congregated in Hinds Plaza and Witherspoon Street to confront the recent acts of violence against the AAPI community. Alongside nearly 20 community organizations, hundreds gathered to remember the victims of racist violence, hear the words of community leaders, stand up against hatred, and show support for the growing movement of Stop AAPI Hate.
This rally was inspirational. I was uplifted to see how many people showed up to support our community and stand together against hatred. The audience reverberated with contagious energy, breaking out into chants of “Enough is enough” and “No justice no peace” and applauding every individual speaker many times over.
This rally was touching. Taking a moment to honor the eight victims of the Atlanta murders, I was reminded why the rally was there at all. Hearing the personal stories of Asian American members of our own community reflected on commonly shared experiences with microaggressions and racism. The courage and boldness which each speaker had were commendable and very moving.
This rally was hopeful. The calls for action aimed at local government and education shined a light in the darkness. The gathered audience expressed a common goal and dedication, a dream for a more equal and more understanding world.
However, the most important aspect of the rally was the solemnity. Hearing the history of anti-Asian racism in policy and in deeds, seeing how much hatred has gone unchecked at all levels, understanding the pain Asian Americans face, all of this goes to show that there are still miles to go to bring down racism in America.
As racism persists as a prominent issue in America, may we continue to band together to stop it, just like Princeton did this Saturday. This should provide us all with an example of addressing problems as a community.