HomeAsian AmericansAsian American business owners express solidarity despite damages

Asian American business owners express solidarity despite damages

As people across the nation protest police violence against Black lives, some Asian American business owners are returning to damaged property.

To be clear, only a small percentage of protestors loot, according to The Atlantic.

However, CBS News states Asian Americans have reported racialized property damage to property as well as increase in discrimination overall during the coronavirus pandemic.

Despite significant damage to property, some Asian American business owners have expressed unwavering support for Black Lives Matter and movements against police brutality and racial injustice.

David Choi, owner of Seoul Taco, a Korean-Mexican fusion food chain, told NBC News that he found one of his restaurants looted, with iPads and cash register missing. Choi said he is “hemorrhaging” cash to look for contractors to board up his shops.

“Am I frustrated? Of course, damn right I am, but Seoul will clean up and live on,” Choi posted on Facebook hours after discovering the damage. “While lives are being senselessly lost, on a way too regular basis, is the way bigger issue. We will clean up and live another day, and fight another day. Please see the bigger picture of this.”

via Facebook

Despite the economic repercussions, everything in his store is replaceable, he wrote.

Gandhi Mahal Restaurant, an Indian restaurant in Minneapolis that was damaged by fire, also posted on its Facebook that its owner said, “let my building burn, justice needs to be served, put those officers in jail.”

Furthermore, Teaism, an Asian cafe in Washington, tweeted: “Before anyone puts a single word in our mouths. Black lives matter.”

In response to solidarity, community members are actively pitching in to reconstructing Asian-owned businesses. After posting his message on Facebook, Choi said a customer created a GoFundMe, which has raised nearly $5,000, and other community members have come to sweep up the debris.

Choi told NBC News that he hopes the business will be able to open to serve the Chicago area community as well as resume work for the employees, many of whom are Black or Latinx.

Win Latt, a Burmese refugee and owner of Win Asian Market in Buffalo, New York, told NBC News one of his customers notified that his storefront was damaged. A contractor then offered to board up the store for free.

“There’s no such thing as perfect system, but together we can rewrite law,” Latt said.

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