Asian Americans want justice after Atlanta shooting

Asian-American leaders gathered in Atlanta on Thursday to demand justice for their community, after a series of shootings which left eight people, predominantly Asian women, dead.

The shootings have brought a surge of hate crimes against Asian Americans back into the national spotlight.

According to the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, documented hate crimes against Asian Americans have surged by 149% in the year since COVID-19 was first reported in China.

Community activist Connie Jee says Asians are no longer staying silent about the violence they face.

"That's our culture, I think. Not only Korean, all Asian people. Even though they experience discrimination, hate crimes, they don't come up to speak. So, that's the main problem. We should tell them 'come up, talk."

Police say they are still investigating the motive of the shooter, who suggested a sex addiction led him to carry out Tuesday's violent rampage at two day spas and a massage parlor.

But Nina Reddy of the National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum says its no coincidence that the majority of his victims were Asian women.

"There has been a history of, like, fetishization, hyper sexualization of Asian women in this country, ever back to the Page Act of 1875, right/ Hundreds of years of hyper sexualizing the Asian body. So, I do want to say that, like, regardless of the way that this comes out, like this is a definitely like a racial issue, and we're treating it like it. Those things happen together. Sexual violence, racial violence against Asian women is something that's been happening for a long time."

U.S. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are expected to meet with Asian-American community leaders in Atlanta on Friday.