The Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Student Union leads Upper School assembly.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, as reported by the Stop AAPI Hate coalition, Asian Americans have experienced a pronounced increase in violent acts and harassment directed toward them.
“It’s time for our community to take a stand,” Charley Ordeshook and Dilan Gohill, co-presidents of the Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Student Union (APIDASU) of Crossroads, rallied their fellow Upper Schoolers at an assembly on Friday, April 23.
Held physically distanced on campus, the student-organized assembly began with APIDASU 10th graders Josie Kim and Sophie Rose Beck and faculty co-adviser Janice Gomez sharing stories of their own experiences with anti-Asian discrimination. They spoke about being the victims of racial slurs and jokes, the assumptions made about them, being silenced and coping with trauma.
“I share to be heard, to take up space and to move things forward,” Janice asserted.
Following these moving accounts, the affinity group provided information on how to combat anti-Asian racism. Complacency, as they noted, is dangerous. They advised Upper Schoolers to speak up, recognize the importance of language and hold themselves accountable. Moreover, they asked students to be conscious of and avoid “performative activism”—superficial acts, especially on social media, used to gain social capital. Instead, APIDASU called upon the community to act as genuine allies to support and uplift the movement.
“Racism against Asian Americans is very rarely addressed,” the members of APIDASU shared after the assembly. “We hope that every member of the Crossroads community is now able to reflect on their actions and has the resources to step in when their peers face incidents of hate.”