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(Video Credit: CNBC Television)
During a press briefing on Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki pinned the blame for an increase in hate crimes against Asian Americans on “hate-filled rhetoric and language” surrounding the origins of COVID-19 in yet another indirect slap at former President Donald Trump.
Psaki made the claim after a reporter asked her about President Joe Biden’s response to a rise in crimes committed against Asian Americans as well as comments made by Olympic snowboarder Chloe Kim, who, according to the Associated Press, said she faced daily torment online and fears for the safety of her parents. The reporter referred to a 339 percent uptick in anti-Asian hate crimes under President Biden’s watch.
“The president has put into place a task force. He has hired a senior-level staffer to be a representative and speak to these threats, the concerns and these fears felt by the Asian American community,” Psaki remarked, trying to deflect from the implied accusation against Biden. “There’s a number of steps we need to take, and continue to take, to address.”
“We’ve seen this rise unfortunately because of hate-filled rhetoric and language around the origins of the pandemic,” she asserted. “That is something that Asian Americans across the country have been feeling.”
— RetMarine (@retmarine1960) February 16, 2022
Psaki defended the president claiming that he is “absolutely committed” to addressing the situation. She then effusively praised Kim, saying that she was “incredibly courageous and brave” to speak out about the “fear she had, the fear she has for her family members.”
The comments come after a Korean-American woman was followed into her Chinatown apartment and viciously stabbed to death on Sunday according to the New York Post.
Video shows a homeless man named Assamad Nash, 25, following the 35-year-old victim, Christina Yuna Lee, on the street as she entered her Chrystie Street apartment building. He followed her into the hallway and committed what prosecutors call a “sexually motivated” crime.
Minutes later, a neighbor across the hallway from the victim’s sixth-floor apartment called 911 around 4:30 a.m. after hearing her dying screams during the brutal stabbing, law enforcement sources reported.
“So much blood,” the building’s owner sadly noted. “My wife said I should call someone to clean all the blood but I’m going to clean it up myself. It’s the least I can do for that poor girl.”
“She was calling for help, screaming for help. I woke up to it. It was awful,” a 21-year-old neighbor said. “‘Help me! Call 911!’ — that’s exactly what she said over and over and over again.”
In February, Psaki contended that Biden has been “outspoken” and is “concerned” over the discrimination Asian Americans are facing. She stated that the White House would support “additional action on the local level or the federal level” to deal with the rise in race-based violence.
Dumbest comment of the day of I understood @PressSec blaming black on Asian hate crimes on because COVID was created in a WUHAN lab? She can't be serious if that's what she attempted to say
— BULLSPIT METER (@sanitray44) February 16, 2022
At that time, the press secretary blamed former President Donald Trump and his administration for crimes targeting Asian Americans.
“There’s no question that some of the damaging rhetoric we saw during the prior administration — calling COVID ‘the Wuhan virus’ or other things — led to perceptions of the Asian American community that are inaccurate, unfair, have elevated threats against Asian Americans,” Psaki argued last March during a press briefing.
There have been more than 10,000 hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders since March of 2020 according to a report from Stop AAPI Hate, which is a national coalition that has focused on the surge in violence against those communities.
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