Local News

Young Observers: Early April Edition

In my school, most of my classmates are Asians.  With the recent spate of anti-Asian hate crimes, I conducted a survey among my Asian friends in Fullerton on how this has affected them.  Besides answering the standard survey questions, 31 of the 50 respondents took time to voice their fears and below are the top 9 responses:

“It seems older Asians are being targeted because of being frail and vulnerable to physical attack. I fear for my grandparents the most. It is scary to even imagine the situation. I would be heartbroken and not the same if something like this happens to them.” (Similar comments were shared by most respondents.)

“It is scary because it can happen anytime, anywhere once you are in a public place.  My parents went to the beach a little while back and almost got jumped when some surfers stopped it.” (Similar comments were shared by most respondents.)

“’He was having a bad day’ was apparently the reason that validates the recent killing of Asian people. I’m scared to have my dad, mom, or brothers not come home because someone was simply having a bad day and taking it out on Asians. It’s terrifying!”

“Seeing the deaths and losses of so many Asians across America has made me so afraid of completing normal tasks such as going to the market or taking a walk. Not only does it establish a terribly vulnerable feeling for being an Asian myself, but also makes me anxious for the well-being of my family and friends.” (Similar comments were shared by most respondents.)

“I am constantly worrying for my parents.  Once, my mom went out to pick up food and I called her to check if she was nearly home and she didn’t pick up. I had a mini heart attack just fearing for her life. She called me back a few minutes later and I haven’t felt so relieved in my life.”

“I feel scared that people might make fun of me and harass me just because I’m Asian. I feel unsafe and worried.”

“I’m afraid that I will get verbally or physically attacked simply for being Asian.” (Similar comments were shared by most respondents.)

“As an Asian, I am often taught to put my head down, but now, even when I do, there is still someone who could bring me pain.”

After hearing the extreme hate crimes made against Asians and Blacks, I feel like I could be falsely accused of many things that could lead to ruining my life.  I have developed a fear of going outside not only due to the virus but also for this anti-Asian hate.

It is unfortunate that besides having to deal with the fear over COVID-19 and the issue of mental health, Asian teens are faced with yet another hurdle in their young lives.  Of the 62% of respondents who expressed fears over anti-Asian hate, most of them have actually been impacted by this. Eight are actual victims; 10 know of family members who were attacked; 15 know of friends who went through similar experiences.  Most attacks happened in person (verbally, 20 respondents). The rest took place online (11 respondents).

Most of us know that this discrimination against Asians escalated last year around April when people started blaming Asians for the pandemic because it originated in China. Since then, the anti-Asian hate crimes have seen an increase of 150% in 2020 compared to 2019. (www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/anti-asian-hate-crimes-increased-nearly-150-2020-mostly-n-n1260264). It was only a year later after people started losing lives, that serious efforts were initiated to stop this anti-Asian hate.  President Biden recently signed an executive order denouncing anti-Asian discrimination and antidiscrimination rallies are being held across the nation.

Because Fullerton has a population with 24% Asian Americans, I thought it is important that we give a voice to our Asian community members.  I have written this article to amplify the voices of our Fullerton Asian teens who need to be heard and assured that we stand together in solidarity with them. As a community, we are in this fight together.  Those who wish to help raise awareness can use the hashtag #StopAsianHate to support the campaign online or encourage friends to let their voices be heard.  Like Cornel West said, “None of us alone can save the nation or the world. But each of us can make a positive difference if we commit ourselves to do so.”

Spring

The beginning of blooms

and the rising of the sun

The bees are humming

and the birds are singing

The rain is pouring

and the crickets are chirping

Spring

Make way for the latest food trend that’s been buzzing in heated debate — “nature’s cereal.” This healthy concoction consists of pomegranate seeds, berries, and coconut water, and is known to offer antioxidants, in addition to assisting digestion. It’s known as a speedy, yet refreshing and vitalizing breakfast option. As much attention as this “nature’s cereal” has garnered, there have been many skeptics who claim that this recipe is simply an unblended smoothie or a plain bowl-of-fruit. However, even award-winning singer, Lizzo, has approved of this vegan breakfast menu, sharing her personalized fruit bowl on the Internet. It’s safe to say that there’s no harm in trying out another viral TikTok recipe, recommended by superstar, Lizzo herself (www.today.com/food/lizzo-loves-tiktok-s-nature-s-cereal-recipe-now-it-t211397).

I heard so many good things about this one and I finally gave in to the hype. Little did I know that it killed the book for me. I had extremely high expectations for The Cruel Prince, but it wasn’t as good as I had thought it would be. I wanted my expectations to go through the roof. I wanted mind-blowing plot twists and A++ world building. I was mildly satisfied. I like for things to happen, for stories to unfold. And if I can’t find a good enough story, I make one.  Jude was one of my top morally grey characters of the year, but also one of the most annoying. I mean, I did like her somewhat, but she never ever stopped complaining about being mortal and wishing she was a faerie to the point where I was practically sick of her. Cardan. I really don’t get all the popularity surrounding him. Even if he was a faerie prince with a tragic backstory, I honestly still wouldn’t care about him. Overall, this was just your normal bland white fantasy with absolutely nothing special about it. But for the sake of Faerie, I’ll continue the series.

As we head into the month of April, the new season of baseball is set to begin. Last year, the season was delayed until July due to the pandemic, but this season is planned to start on time, which is great news. Spring Training, the “pre-season” of Major League Baseball, has been pretty exciting so far, so I cannot wait to see how the real season pans out. I also play Little League baseball, and it is exciting to know that our season is also returning. The pandemic ended our Little League after just one game in 2020.  Almost a full year later, we are finally starting to practice twice a week though there are many key differences that affect the experience of playing baseball. This time, we are required to have masks on. My coaches do allow us to pull them down when there is a safe distance between players, but for the most part we wear our masks 100% of the time. We also have to follow social distancing protocols whenever we can.  We keep our bags and gear far apart. In pre-pandemic years, many kids often try out someone else’s bat or glove, either to see if they like it or if they just prefer it over their own gear. Unfortunately, the pandemic has temporarily paused this practice. This also applies to sharing of  snacks, which is one of the things I miss the most. Finally, at the end of each practice, we no longer huddle close, put our hands in, and yell out the name of our league.  Instead, everyone simply throws a high-five in the air.

Despite these restrictions that prevent us from having the full experience of baseball, we think we can live with them until things get back to normal.

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