Horrific anti-Asian violence in the US during this pandemic is part of a long line of outbreaks fueling fear of the “other.”
- 14th-century: Europe’s Jewish communities were wrongfully accused of deliberately spreading the Black Death.
- 1900: Chinese people were unfairly blamed for a plague outbreak in San Francisco's Chinatown.
- 1980s: Haitians were wrongly blamed for bringing HIV/AIDS to the US.
The pandemic has dispensed with the ‘West is best’ attitude to global health, yet the focus on China as the culprit stoked long-simmering anti-Asian sentiments. It also undermined public health efforts.
Example: Ignoring telltale COVID-19 symptoms in travelers that didn’t come from China.
NPR Goats and Soda