State Watch

Asian Americans pen letter to Ohio Lt. Gov. over tweet that ‘raised the anxiety and fear’

Asian Americans from Upper Arlington wrote a letter to Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted (R) over a tweet in which he called the coronavirus the “Wuhan Virus.”

Lt. Governor Husted, your choice of words has only raised the anxiety and fear that Asians and Asian Americans in Upper Arlington are currently experiencing,” the letter, signed by 69 members of the community, said, NBC4 reported.

Many say that using language such as “Wuhan virus” or “China virus” can contribute to hate crimes against the Asian American community. Others argue it is important to label the virus by where it came from.

“It had nothing to do with race, or ethnicity, or violence, or any other thing. It had to do with science, it had to do with the Chinese government, it had to do with a virus,” Husted said in response to backlash from his tweet.

“It had nothing to do with race or ethnicity and frankly, I’m a little angry at the people who tried to make it so because I believe that’s intentional, too,” Husted added.

The letter to Husted pointed out that hate crimes and incidents against Asian Americans have risen since the coronavirus pandemic began last year.

“Many of us fear the verbal abuse that our children and family members experience will soon escalate to physical violence against them, and we are incapable of protecting them from this,” the letter reads.

“Let me just say as an elected leader of the state of Ohio, Asian Americans have been great contributors and sacrificed and made America a wonderful country,” Husted said.

The White House on Tuesday announced an initiative to address violence toward the Asian American community.

Tags Asian Americans Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic Jon Husted Ohio Wuhan virus

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