Dear GSM community,
On March 16, three massage parlors in Atlanta were attacked by a gunman resulting in the death of eight people and seriously injuring one person. We extend our deepest sympathy to all the families that lost their loved ones in this horrific incident. The motive of the shooter is still not clear, but six of the deceased are of Asian origin and the possibility that this is a hate crime is being investigated.
The incident occurred against the backdrop of increasing attacks, verbal and physical, being inflicted on people of Asian origin. The Stop AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islanders) Hate group indicated a significant increase in attacks directed toward Asians, having received over 2,800 complaints between March to December 2020.
At UC Davis, the Principles of Community affirm our commitment to free speech that is conducted with decency and our rejection of violence and discrimination. They also make us sensitive to the plight of individuals affected by incidents that run afoul of those principles. Our Chancellor’s message reflects this sensitivity and points to various resources provided by the university to individuals in our community who are affected by these incidents.
We are blessed with a diverse community, and people of Asian origin are a significant part of this community. I recently read about an Asian woman who said she doesn’t listen to music anymore when she goes on walks because she wants to be watchful of her surroundings. I can understand why she said that. If any member of our community feels similar fear, I am writing to assure you that you are surrounded by a strong and caring GSM family that lives by the principles of our community. Please take care of yourselves and continue to exhibit behaviors that strengthen our bonds and support our principles. I am grateful to you all for everything you do to make the GSM a safe and nurturing place for everyone.
H. Rao Unnava