By Randall Yip, AsAmNews Executive Editor
Several Asian American groups are cursing a letter from 17 Republican governors calling on President Biden to crack down on Chinese ownership of private land in the U.S.
The letter instigated by Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders called on Biden and congressional leaders to use “all available tools to prevent continued acquisition of American lands by adversarial foreign governments and entities,” reported Arkansas Online.
“Committee of 100 believes that if such restrictions become law, they will make it difficult, if not impossible, for individuals in the U.S. on long-term visas to purchase a home and are likely to lead to direct discrimination against any individuals of Chinese American or AAPI descent,” Charles Zinkowski of Committee of 100 said to AsAmNews.
Florida has already enacted a law that bans ownership in the state by Chinese citizens. The
Florida has already enacted a law that bans ownership in the state by Chinese citizens. The Congressional Research Service says 14 other states have enacted similar laws with more than 20 states considering their own bills.
“For too long, we have allowed dangerous and adversarial governments to infiltrate our country,” the letter from the Governors read. “Our States will tolerate such allowances no longer. The Biden Administration must reckon with the fact that such entities are plain threats to our national security, our farmers, and our citizenry.”
Stop AAPI Hate says the scapegoating must stop. It recently launched a website called Stop the Blame to counter what it considers the discriminatory anti-Chinese sentiment fomented by many politicians.
“As Americans, we are all concerned about national security but when elected officials whip up fear painting an entire group whether based on race, ethnicity and or national origin, you have to ask what is the real agenda and purpose,” Cynthia Choi, a founder of Stop AAPI Hate and co-executive director of Chinese for Affirmative Action said in a statement to AsAsNews. “Our elected officials and policymakers should be data driven and so the outsized focus on Chinese landownership doesn’t square up.”
APA Justice points to two separate investigations which shows Chinese landownership is insignificant.
Farm Progress reports that Chinese own just 19 acres of land in all of Nebraska and that Canada is the largest foreign owner of land in the state.
Investigate Midwest says while foreign landownership in Nebraska has spiked in recent years, Chinese landowners have not contributed to that increase.
Stop AAPI Hate says overall, Chinese landowners account for 1% of all foreign landownership.
“We have not seen substantive factual evidence to support the rhetoric of security threats of foreign landownership in the U.S. by China,” added Jeremy Wu of APA Justice.
Other governors who signed the letter include Ron DeSantis of Florida; Brian Kemp of Georgia; Brad Little of Idaho; Kim Reynolds of Iowa; Greg Gianforte of Montana; Jim Pillen of Nebraska; Doug Burgum of North Dakota; Kevin Stitt of Oklahoma; Henry McMaster of South Carolina; Kristi Noem of South Dakota; Bill Lee of Tennessee; Greg Abbott of Texas; Glenn Youngkin of Virginia; Jim Justice of West Virginia and Mark Gordon of Wyoming.
A bill introduced by Rep Judy Chu (D-CA) and Rep Al Greeen (D-TX) would ban states from enacting such laws based on citizenship and race. The Premption of Real Property Discrimination Act would move that authority to the federal government. It is supported by the Committee of 100.
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