Harvard University says anti-Asian racism has made people 'wish they weren't Asian', Internet says 'f**k off'

In a since-edited section of the university website's counseling and mental health resources page, Harvard made these comments

                            Harvard University says anti-Asian racism has made people 'wish they weren't Asian', Internet says 'f**k off'
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Joining the list of big names trying to condemn anti-Asian hate but failing in the eyes of social media, is Harvard University. The institution is drawing flak from Twitter after one of its students pointed out that in a since-deleted section of the university's website, Harvard suggested Asian people may ‘wish [they] weren’t Asian’. 

In the tweeted screenshots, the university's counseling and mental health resources page can be seen making those remarks, thus allegedly making the words stand out even more, claim some users. Although that particular content has since disappeared from the website, this comes in the wake of a spike in anti-Asian hate and violence. Stop AAPI Hate also reported 3,795 incidents of racially charged violence against Asian-Americans between March 19, 2020 and February 28, 2021.


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Referring to the recent Atlanta Asian massage parlor shooting, Harvard wrote on their website that they desire to ‘acknowledge the emotional and mental impact this may have on the Asian and Asian American community.’ Urging Asians to ‘find pride in your community', the entire paragraph read: "When you experience racism, you may feel shame. You may wish that you weren’t Asian, but remember that your ancestors likely went through similar or worse incidents. They survived by recognizing the beauty and strength of their community. So, seek out or create literature, art, films, shows, and music that highlight your community in a positive light."

In a screenshot shared by user Anthony Ocampo, the previously published words on the website have been captured. And while it might have been taken down now, anti-Asian racism flyers issued by Harvard also had the same advice printed on them. Twitter users sharing their shock and outrage included Harvard student Matteo Wong, who asked: "WHAT? Please tell me who wrote “you may wish that you weren’t Asian” on the mental health resources page, why they thought it would be helpful, and how telling me this is supposed to help me feel any sort of racial “pride.” at that, pride in what, exactly?"

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The long rant continues in a Twitter thread, with Wong adding: "So harvard tells me, A) racism happens, dont worry, your ancestors survived worse (please tell me, who were my ancestors, how do you know where they lived and what they lived through? some mythical asian ur-bloodline?) then harvard tells me B) think away your racism by drawing and writing and C) if youre going to think away your racism by making art, make sure that art is happy and celebratory of asian communities bc that’s the only thing people (presumably the only people who matter being the rich white men running harvard) want to see." He then quips "god forbid art should depict pain."

Wong also shared screenshots of the apology the website published in the wake of this outrage. "Adding also this thread so people see. There is now an apology," Wong tweeted, quoting: "'we are deeply sorry... had intended to post helpful resources... what we ultimately posted included some insensitive and inappropriate content'." He then reflects: "Baldwin: It is the innocence which constitutes the crime".

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Wong also pointed out how the previous edition of the page had predated the Atlanta shooting ‘by months’, adding: ‘get your sh*t together Harvard', before asking them to 'f* off'. Another user also slammed the university, saying: "Wow... that goes against everything you are supposed to do for people experiencing hardship. Never ever say someone may have "gone through worse" or "have it worse than you." ITS NOT A PAIN COMPETITION."

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