Protect Asian Lives: An Ode to Asian Culture
By Christina Ossa
Volume 1 Issue 7
April 22, 2021
Original photo by Christina Ossa
Boba Black Milk Tea:
(Up to two servings)
¼-½ cup Boba Pearls (You can buy them on amazon)
⅓-½ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup milk
1 cup of tea of choice (I used Black Tea)
5-6 ice cubes
Grab a medium-sized saucepan and follow the directions on the back of your package to heat the boba pearls ; I would use about ¼ cup of boba pearls if you want only one serving
While your boba pearls are heating, heat the water in a kettle or small pan that you are going to use for your tea (I would use a strong flavored tea since it’s being mixed with milk and sugar if you want to taste the flavor of the tea)
After draining your boba pearls, place them back into the saucepan and add the dark brown sugar (you can add as much as you want depending on how sweet you like your bubble tea)
Grab a fairly large-sized cup and pour your boba pearls into the cup
Pour the milk into the cup, add more depending on your preference
Add the ice cubes into the cube then slowly pour the tea to the top of the cup
Grab a wide straw for the boba and enjoy~
Recently, Asian Americans have become targets for harassment, discrimination, and racism more so than ever. Racism has persisted as an obstacle for people of color, including me, in our daily lives for as far back as anyone can remember. However, since the start of the pandemic, Anti-Asian hate crimes have increased by nearly 150% with estimates of cases being roughly 3,800 anti-Asian bias incidents, and one of the motivators this year and last year being that many people blame Asians for COVID-19 and the pandemic since the virus spread from Wuhan, China. I feel for Asian Americans as I do for all other people of color, and if we can support their culture, we should also be able to support and respect them as people as well.
People of color are unfairly treated many times in this country and throughout the world, ranging from police brutality and hate crimes to just generalized, subtle stereotypes thrown toward us in our day-to-day lives. However, no one deserves to experience hate crimes solely for the color of their skin and the violent opinions people hold against members of certain races, especially not innocent Asian people simply trying to mind their business. This is why I wanted to share a bubble tea recipe that I’ve recently used and become obsessed with. I love bubble tea, I love anime, I love Asian cuisines (Sichuan Chinese food, Japanese cuisine, etc.). I consume Asian culture almost every day, and if I love their culture so much I, along with others who enjoy Asian culture as I do, should be able to spread awareness of this subject. I’m sure in your life you’ve experienced or appreciated Asian food, products, or anything related. If we can experience Asian culture at its highs, we should also be able to support Asians experiencing hate crime and being attacked; we should help them and stand up for them during their lows.
Much more recently on March 16th, there was a series of mass shootings targeting spas and massage parlors where 8 women were shot to death, 6 of the victims being Asian. The shooter was named Robert Aaron Long and CNN reports that he stated that he had a “sex addiction” which he claimed was his reason for the shooting. The fact that this man KILLED 8 women is sickening, but what creates even more disgust was that he did it to “eliminate his temptation”. But what causes this shooting to be even more revolting than it is already is that the police reports did not declare this a hate crime nor femicide, and the sheriff of Cherokee County at first stated in an interview that “Yesterday was a really bad day for him [Long] and this is what he did”, which is completely ridiculous as clearly, this was a race/gender-motivated crime that should not be excused in any form. Long targeted solely spas and massage parlors, and NBC News even reported that Long specifically drove from location to location meaning that he had clearly planned this beforehand. NBC reports that survivor Eunji Lee, who was once robbed and held at gunpoint, declared herself that this shooting felt targeted and extremely different from a “traditional” robbery since Long did not give any demands or requests to the women on-duty. He simply shot anyone he could find, and what’s more, he killed all women, and the majority of them were Asian.
While the Atlanta shooting in Georgia may have been one of the more extreme incidents, it’s sadly one of many hate crimes against Asians from this year and last year alone. While Asian-Americans continually face brutality, attacks, and harassment simply because of the color of their skin and heritage, we continue to enjoy and immerse ourselves in their culture. While it’s most certainly not a bad thing to enjoy and appreciate Asian culture, we must take into account that if we enjoy their culture, we also must support them as people. We cannot ‘pick and choose’ what we prefer from their overall culture and identities.
As I’ve said, I love Asian culture, whether it be their food, art, shows/movies, etc., I will always appreciate what the Asian community has shared with us. This is also why I’ve shared a bubble tea recipe, because this simple milk, tea, sugar concoction is one of the most popular drinks among the mainstream population and it was shared with us from the Asian community, specifically Taiwan. If you don’t like bubble tea personally, that’s completely fine, but this beverage is just one of many examples of Asian culture that we can enjoy every day.
However, as joys from the Asian community are shared with us, so are their misfortunes. It is our job to help spread awareness on these heinous hate crimes that have plagued so many Asian lives, and it’s time for us to stand up for the Asian community and Stop Asian Hate. If you enjoy anime, going out to your favorite Asian restaurant, drinking bubble tea -- if you enjoy Asian culture in any way, shape, or form -- then help the community whose culture you endorse yourself in so much by simply signing a petition for change, donating money to Anti-Asian-Hate foundations, attending a protest against Asian Hate, spreading awareness to these horrible incidents and any other ways to support our fellow Asian-American community.
Petition You Can Sign:
Park, Hanna. "He Shot at 'Everyone He Saw': Atlanta Spa Workers Recount Horrors
of Shooting." NBC News, 2 Apr. 2021. NBC News, www.nbcnews.com/news/
Accessed 9 Apr. 2021.
Wagner, Meg, et al. "8 Killed in Shootings at Atlanta-Area Spas." CNN, 18 Mar.
2021. CNN News, www.cnn.com/us/live-news/atlanta-area-shootings-03-17-21/
index.html. Accessed 9 Apr. 2021.