From Time: “A 15-year-old high schooler, only identified by his surname Choi, jumped out of his apartment home in the southeastern city of Gyeongsan last Monday after being bullied for roughly two years. His death — the second youth suicide in South Korea this month — has shocked the nation and called into question the government’s efforts to stop school violence.” South Korea is known for its high suicide rates especially among young people. It is about time the government intentionally pursues obvious causes like bullying, and hopefully initiates some real change not only in the educational sphere but in wider society concerning family relationships and dealing with judgment and pressure.
While Asian Americans are the most bullied students in school, among them Sikhs are a particularly tempting target, especially after 9/11 where they are often taunted with the label of “terrorist. Gulshan Singh made “Let it Out” as an entry in the Sikh coalition Diversity video contest on minority experience. His video took first place and was recently featured at the 2011 Sikh Arts Film festival. I don’t agree with everything he says, but it’s worth checking out, along with some of the other entries in the contest
On December 3, 2009 at South Philadelphia High School, 26 Asian immigrant students were assaulted by classmates, the majority of them African American. Thirteen of those attacked ended up in the emergency room.
The Hyphen Magazine article “Are You Picking On Me?” by Helen I. Hwang goes in detail and in depth about the event and what went down that tragic day. What’s most disturbing is the way the district and the school handled the situation that day and the long time problem of bullying of API heritage students at that campus. There was an attempt to mute the race-based aspect of the bullying and attacks, and 80 API students had to boycott the school and have outside community support and intervention in order change the unsafe environment that was specifically and especially hostile to API.