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After the spa shootings, Atlanta protested against hate, as did the rest of the world.



After the spa shootings, Atlanta protested against hate, as did the rest of the world.
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After the spa shootings, Atlanta protested against hate, as did the rest of the world.

After the spa shootings, Atlanta protested against hate, as did the rest of the world.


A large crowd gathered outside the Georgia state Capitol on Saturday to demand justice for the victims of recent shootings at massage parlors, as well as to condemn racism, xenophobia, and sexism.

Hundreds of people of all ages, races, and ethnicities gathered in Atlanta’s Liberty Plaza and similar protests around the world, waving signs and shouting slogans.

They congratulated U.S. Senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, as well as Georgia state Rep. Bee Nguyen, the first Vietnamese American to serve in the Georgia House of Representatives, in Atlanta.

“I just wanted to drop by to say to my Asian sisters and daughters, we see you, and, more importantly, we are going to stand with you,” Warnock said to thunderous applause as passing motorists honked their horns in solidarity.

Robert Aaron Long, a 21-year-old white man, is accused of killing four people in two Atlanta spas and four more at a massage parlor in suburban Cherokee City, about 30 miles (50 kilometers) away. Women of Asian origin made up six of the eight people killed on Tuesday. Another individual was wounded, but he or she was unharmed.

Long confessed to the murders, but said they were not racially motivated, according to investigators. According to police, he appeared to have a sex addiction, which led him to lash out at what he viewed as sources of temptation. Police say they’re also trying to figure out what motivated the attacks, and whether they can be counted as hate crimes.

Last year, Georgia lawmakers passed a hate crime law that provides for tougher sentences for crimes motivated by a victim’s race, colour, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, or disability. Under Georgia law, a hate crime is not a separate offense, but it can be used to extend the sentence of someone who has already been convicted of another crime.

“The facts stay the same no matter how you spin it. “This was a direct assault on the Asian community,” said Nguyen, a supporter of women and minorities. She found out that the gunman threatened Asian-American women-owned companies.

“Let us join hands with our ally group and seek justice for all victims of white supremacy, not just these victims,” she said.

Hundreds of people assembled in a different Atlanta park and marched through the streets to join the larger protest, chanting “Stop Asian hate” and “We are what America looks like.”

Frankie Laguna, a 23-year-old Atlanta native who now resides in Tennessee, was one of the group’s organizers. After her mother arrived from Taiwan, she told the crowd that she was the first person in her family to be born in the United States.

While the community marched, she said, “I’m sick of being belittled, hypersexualized, and despised for who I am, for something I can’t alter.”

Bernard Dong, a 24-year-old Chinese student at Georgia Tech, said he came out to fight for the rights of all minorities, not just Asians. “Asian people are always too quiet, but things are changing,” he said.

Dong described the shootings as “angry and disgusting,” as well as the continued violence against Asians, minorities, and women in 2021.

People need to pay attention to the injustice that people of Asian descent face, according to Otis Wilson, a 38-year-old Black photographer. “With the Black community, we went through this last year, and we’re not the only ones who go through this,” he said.

Camden Hunt, a 28-year-old Black woman from Baltimore, said she first became involved in activism there. She took part in demonstrations in Baltimore in 2015 following the death of Freddie Gray, a Black man who died of a broken neck while in police custody. She moved to Atlanta four years ago and became active in community activism, organizing an event last summer to help Black women who have been victims of police brutality.

Hunt attended the rally on Saturday to “show Black and Asian unity,” and said, “I think it’s awesome.” When I look out the window, I see people of all colors, genders, and backgrounds.”

From coast to coast, similar rallies were held. Hundreds of people gathered in San Francisco’s Portsmouth Square, in the heart of Chinatown, to mourn the victims and demand an end to racist and sexist abuse against Asian Americans. Participants kept signs that read, “Stop Asian Hatred.”

Hundreds of people rallied in Pittsburgh, and videos on social media showed Sandra Oh, a former Grey’s Anatomy actress and Golden Globe winner, speaking to the crowd.

“I’m going to put everyone here to the test… Will you assist us if you see one of our sisters or brothers in need?” “I am proud to be Asian!” she screamed into a megaphone later. I’m meant to be here!”

According to news accounts, about 300 people gathered in Chicago, and hundreds marched from Times Square to Chinatown in New York City.

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My self Eswar, I am Creative Head at RecentlyHeard. I Will cover informative content related to political and local news from the United Nations and Canada.