Sullivan on the Atlanta “hate crime”

March 20, 2021 • 12:00 pm

Yesterday I discussed the murder of 8 people, six of them Asian women working in spas, by accused killer Robert Aaron Long. What prompted me to write was the assertion, against all the evidence, that the crime must be a “hate crime” motivated by an animus against Asians. This, speculated many, was simply another in the rash of assaults on Asians in the last year, many of which seem to come from blaming Asian-Americans for the coronavirus.

What made this crime different was not only the lack of a “hate” motive—the accused perp told the police that he was trying to eliminate the temptation of sex, as he apparently, against his religious beliefs, sought sex from those two spas—but the fact that it was a mass killing. The mainstream media and college administrators immediately sent out messages of solidarity with Asians, as this seemed to be the last straw in a string of xenophobic violence.

It may well be true that the previous assaults were indeed “hate crimes”—it’s really hard to judge motive if the perp doesn’t admit it or there’s other evidence—but in this one there’s no hard evidence of bigotry, and pretty strong evidence instead of violence derived from a twisted, religion-inspired cognitive dissonance, with the murdered women being Asian because Asians provided sex in convenient spas. The crime itself is absolutely reprehensible, leaving the families and loved ones of eight people bereft. But it gets worse if the crime is sold as a “hate crime” when it’s not, for that gets an entire community of Americans scared and feeling ostracized. This is why the media needs to report responsibly, emphasizing the difference between what we know and what we don’t.  They did not.

As of now, we don’t have a really solid idea of motive, but what we know goes against the narrative that this was a crime of hatred and bigotry. Nevertheless, as I maintained, some people seem to want it to be a hate crime. In his big piece on the Weekly Dish, Andrew Sullivan goes further and argues that people want it that way because it fits a convenient narrative of “social justice”: oppression, divisiveness, and hatred.

Click on the screenshot to read his column, though it may be paywalled. (I subscribe.) Of all the Substack columns you can subscribe to, I find Sullivan’s and John McWhorter’s the best so far, as Bari Weiss is still finding her feet in this venue. Glenn Greenwald is too splenetic, and also seems to hammer the same few topics over and over.

Sullivan, who follows the “mainstream media” (MSM) far more than I, agrees that Long’s motive was unclear, but doesn’t point towards “hate”. And he uses the MSM’s slant in that direction to indict it for abandoning objectivity:

. . . this story has also been deeply instructive about our national discourse and the state of the American mainstream and elite media. This story’s coverage is proof, it seems to me, that American journalists have officially abandoned the habit of attempting any kind of “objectivity” in reporting these stories. We are now in the enlightened social justice world of “moral clarity” and “narrative-shaping.”

Here’s the truth: We don’t yet know why this man did these horrible things. It’s probably complicated, or, as my therapist used to say, “multi-determined.” That’s why we have thorough investigations and trials in America. We only have one solid piece of information as to motive, which is the confession by the mass killer to law enforcement: that he was a religious fundamentalist who was determined to live up to chastity and repeatedly failed, as is often the case. Like the 9/11 bombers or the mass murderer at the Pulse nightclub, he took out his angst on the source of what he saw as his temptation, and committed mass murder. This is evil in the classic fundamentalist sense: a perversion of religion and sexual repression into violence.

We have yet to find any credible evidence of anti-Asian hatred or bigotry in this man’s history. Maybe we will. We can’t rule it out. But we do know that his roommates say they once asked him if he picked the spas for sex because the women were Asian. And they say he denied it, saying he thought those spas were just the safest way to have quick sex. That needs to be checked out more. But the only piece of evidence about possible anti-Asian bias points away, not toward it.

What the media did, and it’s quite unbalanced, if not mendacious:

And yet. Well, you know what’s coming. Accompanying one original piece on the known facts, the NYT ran nine — nine! — separate stories about the incident as part of the narrative that this was an anti-Asian hate crime, fueled by white supremacy and/or misogyny. Not to be outdone, the WaPo ran sixteen separate stories on the incident as an antiAsian white supremacist hate crimeSixteen! One story for the facts; sixteen stories on how critical race theory would interpret the event regardless of the facts. For good measure, one of their columnists denounced reporting of law enforcement’s version of events in the newspaper, because it distracted attention from the “real” motives. Today, the NYT ran yet another full-on critical theory piece disguised as news on how these murders are proof of structural racism and sexism — because some activists say they are.

That last link, which appears to be a “news” rather than an “opinion” piece, is particularly invidious, as it blithely assumes that the killing was inspired by the intersection of racism and misogyny, when in fact it could have been something completely different.

And the woke weigh in:

Nikole Hannah-Jones, the most powerful journalist at the New York Times, took to Twitter in the early morning of March 17 to pronounce: “Last night’s shooting and the appalling rise in anti-Asian violence stem from a sick society where nationalism has been stoked and normalized.” Ibram Kendi tweeted: “Locking arms with Asian Americans facing this lethal wave of anti-Asian terror. Their struggle is my struggle. Our struggle is against racism and White Supremacist domestic terror.”

When the cops reported the killer’s actual confession, left-Twitter went nuts. One gender studies professor recited the litany: “The refusal to name anti-Asianess [sic], racism, white supremacy, misogyny, or class in this is whiteness doing what it always does around justifying its death-dealing … To ignore the deeply racist and misogynistic history of hypersexualization of Asian women in this ‘explication’ from law enforcement of what emboldened this killer is also a willful erasure.”

In The Root, the real reason for the murders was detailed: “White supremacy is a virus that, like other viruses, will not die until there are no bodies left for it to infect. Which means the only way to stop it is to locate it, isolate it, extract it, and kill it.”

Trevor Noah insisted that the killer’s confession was self-evidently false: “You killed six Asian people. Specifically, you went there. Your murders speak louder than your words. What makes it even more painful is that we saw it coming. We see these things happening. People have been warning, people in the Asian communities have been tweeting, they’ve been saying, ‘Please help us. We’re getting punched in the street. We’re getting slurs written on our doors.’” Noah knew the killer’s motive more surely than the killer himself.

I’m loath to quote too much of Sullivan, as you should read him on his site, not here (only $50 per year), but I’ll give two more excerpts:

What you see here is social justice ideology insisting, as [NYT editor] Dean Baquet temporarily explained, that intent doesn’t matter. What matters is impact. The individual killer is in some ways irrelevant. His intentions are not material. He is merely a vehicle for the structural oppressive forces critical theorists believe in. And this “story” is what the media elites decided to concentrate on: the thing that, so far as we know, didn’t happen.

And an analysis:

But notice how CRT operates. The only evidence it needs it already has. Check out the identity of the victim or victims, check out the identity of the culprit, and it’s all you need to know. If the victims are white, they don’t really count. Everything in America is driven by white supremacist hate of some sort or other. You can jam any fact, any phenomenon, into this rubric in order to explain it.

The only complexity the CRT crowd will admit is multiple, “intersectional” forms of oppression: so this case is about misogyny and white supremacy. The one thing they cannot see are unique individual human beings, driven by a vast range of human emotions, committing crimes with distinctive psychological profiles, from a variety of motives, including prejudices, but far, far more complicated than that.

There’s much more, including data suggesting that assaults on Asians in general do not reflect white supremacy (there are slightly more Blacks than Whites who assault Asians despite the numerical predominance of Whites), and a summary of how the media has degenerated:

But the theory behind hate crimes law is that these crimes matter more because they terrify so many beyond the actual victim. And so it seems to me that the media’s primary role in cases like these is providing some data and perspective on what’s actually happening, to allay irrational fear. Instead they contribute to the distortion by breathlessly hyping one incident without a single provable link to any go this — and scare the bejeezus out of people unnecessarily.

The media is supposed to subject easy, convenient rush-to-judgment narratives to ruthless empirical testing. Now, for purely ideological reasons, they are rushing to promote ready-made narratives, which actually point away from the empirical facts. To run sixteen separate pieces on anti-Asian white supremacist misogynist hate based on one possibly completely unrelated incident is not journalism. It’s fanning irrational fear in the cause of ideological indoctrination. And it appears to be where all elite media is headed.

Given the kind of coverage I’ve read, which made me angry, I have to say that Sullivan is right. This is one of his better pieces, and I don’t see much to disagree with. The fact is that this one crime hasn’t fit the narrative that people demand it to fit (something I didn’t say yesterday), and so they try to force it into the Procrustean bed of the CRT narrative.


51 thoughts on “Sullivan on the Atlanta “hate crime”

  1. I think maybe some of the conversation is failing because of the legal definition of ‘hate crime’ versus the common sense understanding of violence stemming from hate. I think we can be fairly confident to say that the shooter hates his sexual drive and hates the women he sees as objects of temptation – who in this case (I suspect due to proximity and availability) happen to be Asian. Do stereotypes about Asian women’s sexuality play into his feelings of temptation? Probably and almost certainly. Do these factors meet the legal definition of a ‘hate crime’? IANAL, so I don’t know. Did he shoot them because he just plain hates Asian people? I would wager not.

    1. It’s my understanding that, while many jurisdictions have hate crime laws, they differ widely on their legal definition. I suppose this can be some sort of justification for the MSM to treat it generically. I was reminded of this when watching an interview on CNN of the mayor of Atlanta. She seemed to recognize that there’s “hate” according to statutes and hate in the minds of perpetrators and the public and that they are likely different things.

      1. Hey PDM, it’s been a while. Hope you and the family have been weathering the last and current years safely & well.

        1. It has been. I’ve had to take measures to protect my family from the externalities of my job, but we’ve made it though; arms are jabbed and soon routines will come closer to normal.

          How about you? All is well I hope?

          1. It’s been quite the ride to be sure but we’ve been able to stay healthy and take things in stride. Waiting eagerly for my turn to get the jab. Optimistic about this year.

    2. My impression is that blatant double standards in hate crime convictions also matter a great deal. Time and again there is outrage in my right-wing bubble about some black-on-white attack that is obviously at least racially aggravated, if not motivated. In 2017, black teens in Chicago kidnapped and tortured a disabled white boy while racially insulting him ( After much outrage, there were hate crime convictions: but all due to the victim being disabled, and not due to his race. The priorities here might well have been the other way round had the races been reversed, and I doubt any hate crime charge would have appeared without the disability angle.

      How laws are defined is one thing, how they are enforced can be quite another.

  2. … the accused perp told the police that he was trying to eliminate the temptation of sex, as he apparently, against his religious beliefs …

    Chrissake, the little numbskull could’ve followed the scriptural advice of Matthew 5:29-30, “And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee … And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee” instead of offing innocent masseuses.

  3. This is being posted anonymously and using a VPN. I beg PCC(E)’s indulgence on this occasion.

    As a former fundamentalist Christian who frequented massage parlors, I can offer a few direct, experiential observations. Part of the journey coming out of both of those worlds included participating in 12 Step groups dedicated to what was labeled as sexual addiction. While I can’t speak for any other man in those groups, I can share my experience and what I remember hearing.

    I cannot recall that the nationality or ethnicity of the massage parlor sex worker ever being discussed. In my case, that was never an issue. There were physical characteristics that were sought out (breast size, hair color, body shape, etc.), but the skin color or nationality was never a focus. In fact, the women were fully objectified. They were only vaginas, breasts, mouths, and hands. There was never any attempt to connect with the women in any way other than as sexual objects. Real intimacy was avoided in exchange for the ephemeral sexual experience.

    There was also little real thought put into the acts. The process of “acting out” seems to require a shutting down of the executive function. Actions become more primal. There is little conscious thought. The men doing these behaviors (including me) are clearly planning, acting, choosing, but not in any conscious way. After a point, we seemed to be on auto-pilot. In the terms of the 12 Step program, the addiction had taken over.

    Given these experiences, it’s hard for me to see how this could be a racially motivated hate crime. It seems to be an unfortunate matter of the demographics of the human trafficking of Asian women into the sex trade.

    1. Another explanation for Asian women being sexualized at a higher rate is that Asians are the most neotenic race. Neoteny is attractive in women, after all.

  4. For a crime to become an event, it must be intersectional. 2 days after Atlanta shootings of 8 people happened in Indianapolis. Not as many people but the details are also horrible.

    (BTW, the overwhelming emphasis of those Atlanta shootings has been the 6 Asian ladies.)

    Question: Did you see much about it?

    “Indiana man charged with killing 4 after stimulus argument

    An Indianapolis man has been formally charged with murder in the killings of three adults and a child he allegedly shot to death after he and a former girlfriend argued because he wanted a share of her federal COVID-19 relief money”

    1. Yes, and his “defense” was ‘she made me kill them.’ And I’m sure he was equally ‘at the end of his rope.’ They all seem quite prepared with their excuses.

  5. If we consider the motive the shooter offered— to remove sexual temptation — and consider the nature of the church which instilled certain beliefs about the nature of men and women and the roles they play in God’s creation — I don’t think it’s a stretch to say the crime was at least partly motivated by misogyny. In the very conservative patriarchal Christian world view, women are seen as subordinate to men, either “helpmeets” who support or harlots who lead astray. Their role is to be submissive, and men who begin with that assumption to some extent tend to end up objectifying women as “the other.” I think it could be argued that this is misogyny. Those women were used as interchangeable tools to an end; discarding them may not have seemed like murder, exactly.

    What the mainstream media also seems to be staying away from here is the role of religion in this.

    1. I was brought up short by Sullivan’s statement that it was a perversion of religion since the Calvinists say “Be killing sin or it will be killing you”. And of course the misogyny really helps in seeing them as objects causing temptation rather than people, but I’m not sure it was a cause so much as making it easy to justify in his warped view.

      Still I agree it was an important part, the root cause of course being religion.

  6. I blame the audience, the American public, more than I blame the media. I think they are just giving what most people want. Pretty much everything is to be viewed through an emotional, lived experience lens. Whatever story they cover, they have to get some human interest involved. If they cover the pandemic, which necessitates talking about statistics, they must balance it with some interviews of people who have lost loved ones and nurses who are treating those still fighting it. This appears to be what most people want. I find that many in my own family seem to prefer this.

    As someone with a scientific point of view, I find this upsetting to say the least. I am not immune to the emotional side of the story but I don’t want my emotions deliberately manipulated. It distracts from rational analysis even if I recognize it for what it is.

    I still watch the evening national news but it is more a thing that my wife and I do together after dinner than an information gathering occasion. I sometimes ask her if it is ok if we fast-forward past the worst parts. Sometimes she let’s me.

    1. Not going to comment on matters (the topic at hand) that is too American to understand for a non-American, but what you write is towards what I thought too, more specifically, the process of news telling stories with three components (a) creating negative emotions as more potent, especially fear and hatred, (b) cater to specific audiences (c) provide pseudo-explanations that apparently eases some minds. Saying someone did it because of “misogyny” (for example) has no apparent explanatory value.

      Now (a) and (c) have an interesting relationship: hatred and fear are negative, but giving faux-explanations is reducing discomfort. I suspect this combination of reducing angst, or the more ominous feeling oozing out of darkness and uncertainty, coupled with an identified enemy or known ill is like cognitive emotional junk food, a supernormal stimulus to some people.

      In any way, the entire US media seems to become like Fox News now, but catering to different audiences. This will lead to some interesting centrifugal forces that will be interesting to watch from afar, once it picked up more speed, and it will.

      1. The bias toward negative news has always been with us. It’s a natural bias as people are interested in being warned against danger. When our pets make a lot of noise, it is usually because they fear something. Same with us.

        I don’t think the mainstream media in the US has any particular bias toward a political party, with the exception of Fox News, OAN, and the like. The non-Fox news appears to be biased because what they offer is so very often an opinion opposite to the one on Fox. This occurs naturally but is probably enhanced by the conscious desire to counter the pro-Trumpism message. By “counter”, I don’t mean cater to the Left as a market. Instead, I mean when some pro-Trump politician lies about something, CNN feels that it should report on it and show its audience that it isn’t true. This may seem pro-Left but it really isn’t. It’s pro-truth. When one party has chosen to promote a political agenda based on telling its base what it wants to hear, calling attention to it is going to put them naturally in opposition.

        Again, this comes down to the people. If they want the truth, things will go fine. If they want to be told lies that fit a worldview they wish were true, things will be bad.

        1. First, I don’t regard the Woke as the Left, and believe even stronger that the US has hardly a Left in any meaningful capacity in any institution. Actual left views are represented in the population, according to surveys, but kept out of politics and the media. The US is hard right politically, to a degree where the supposed left side President Joe Biden closes by thanking God and the troops. From coast to coast, this doesn’t raise any eyebrow.

          Second, I think you misunderstand my point. Fox News developed a “news” style with a narrative structure where events are unfolding and where viewers want to check back in an hour to learn the latest developments. Otherwise, you don’t get the eyeballs to sell to advertisers. Roger Ailes’ second trick was to discard a “neutral” pretense of old fashioned news and instead serve what a specific target audience wants to hear. Fox thus produced a steady undercurrent of a threat narrative, in this case, a right wing outrage machine.

          This style is being adopted by so-called liberal media as well, but of course changed for their audience, with their own narratives. These are the things we often read here, called “woke”. It’s also an outrage machine. Compared to Fox News, which are blatantly lying, so-called liberal news must look objective. They are more grounded in facts, I agree, but are of course with their own spin.

  7. Many people undoubtedly jumped the gun in labeling this a “hate crime.” Others, however, also jumped the gun in accusing everyone else of automatically trying to cram this case into a hate-crime Procrustean bed.

    When some idiot shoots and kills eight people, seven of whom are women, and six of those seven Asians, I think there’s a natural inclination to think, “Jeez, sounds like this guy was targeting Asian women.”

    I understand that correlation is not causation, but its generally a better place to start forming hypotheses than as between orthogonal factors. I’m content to await further development of the evidence before venturing any opinion as to the nature of this case.

    I agree wholeheartedly with John McWhorter that wokeism has taken on the attributes of a religion. But I can’t help but have a nagging sense that something like the embers of religious fervor are starting to smolder beneath the most adamantine of the anti-woke, too. Let’s not let this get to the point where the creatures outside can look from woke to anti-woke, and from anti-woke to woke, and from woke to anti-woke again, but it is impossible to say which is which.

    1. I agree. While we wait to see what really motivated this killer, it doesn’t really hurt to talk about anti-Asian crime. Do we really ever know the motivation of many mass murderers and does it really matter? We do need to know the deep statistics as to whether anti-Asian crime is really on an upswing or is it rising at the same rate as non-Asian crime? These discussions can certainly be prompted by the killings and continue without certainty of the killer’s motive. Many people regard these Asian sex workers as victims of our culture even if not murdered so there’s also that.

  8. Maybe discussing motives for murder will become a national past time in America. Also, possibly criticizing other’s guesswork will become even more popular. We certainly have plenty of murder for everyone to take their shot and make this the national debate. The only problem is, it does nothing to solve the violence and murder problem in the country. It does not talk about the real cause. It also provides no solutions. Am I wrong or did someone give a solution in all this talk and I missed it? Let us at least ask the easy question which is — what group or political party is directly responsible for our condition (weaponized murder). Not the woke tribe, not the journalist, and not even the democrats. Gee, who might be left? Everything here becomes political so lets nail down the responsible party.

    1. Discussing motives for murder has always been a national pastime. In fact, it has always been a human pastime. This is more about motivating the need to find a solution than providing solutions. The solution discussed in the heat of the moment is usually some kind of lynching which, of course, is not a proper solution.

      1. Sorry but I do not see anyone here looking for a solution. All are doing nothing but speculating about motives and as I said, this leads to nothing. If you are the detective looking at a crime, motive is always something they are looking for. But that is only to confirm a suspect and make an arrest. There was no need for that in this case, the coward was taken into custody without any fight. His folks threw him out of the house and his folks assisted the police in catching him quickly. He was certainly mentally ill but also pretty stupid. The cops used his cell phone to run him down fairly fast. It is only the media and the public who desire this motive, but in my opinion it means nothing now, just conversation.

        1. Well, I guess that getting rid of these fundamentalist churches would be a good start. Tax them.
          Another one is to ask the SC why there is this ‘well regulated militia’ clause in the 2nd amendment. Just for decoration?

  9. It is important to have contrarians like Andrew Sullivan and Glenn Greenwald as a check on reality. They often given useful insight or at least a fuller understanding of an issue. However, they both sometimes seem to latch on to some head scratching issues.

    In the particular case of the Atlanta murders of 6 Asian women and 2 white people, Sullivan has become incensed that commentators have dared to point out that this is the result of anti-asian bias/white nationalism. Now he may be technically correct (he and we aren’t sure currently) that the overt cause of this tragedy may not be based on race. But he is splitting a very fine hair here. If a person went into 3 police stations and killed 6 police officers over a parking ticket, would he be saying that the person wasn’t anti-police, he was just mad about a parking ticket? He was only mad about the parking ticket and took it out on those who gave it to him, so this (according to Sullivan) would not be about the police, only the parking ticket, and anyone who said that violence against police was a real problem were guilty of a great crime. We can broaden this out to a police office kneeling on a black man’s neck. Is there any direct evidence that that police officer did this because of the person’s race? Then, according to Sullivan, anyone pointing out the symbolism of this is trafficking in “fake news.”

    This murderer went to Asian massage parlors reportedly to have “safe sex.” A white man felt it was safe to pay for sex with Asian women. He apparently feels guilt/shame from this and then buys a gun and returns to kill those who he sees brings this on. This fits entirely within the trope of the submissive Asian woman and the dominant while male. It is certainly possible that this is just a big coincidence, but to absolutely, definitively say that it is completely irresponsible for people to point this out is a little over the top.

    1. Suppose that the women working in the spa were white or Hispanic instead of Asian (I’m assuming that sex work in spas is predominantly by Asian women in that area) and he killed them for exactly the same reason: they made him violate his oath not to have extramarital sex. This seems entirely possible. Now would you say that this was an anti-white or an anti-Hispanic hate crime. That does not fit within the “submissive Asian and dominant white male” narrative.

      And what if the guy were black instead of white, as are apparently a lot of those who have already committed violent crimes on Asians this year. How do you fit that into your “dominant white male” narrative? Would you care to try that with the black-on-Asian crimes?

      You’re reaching here, trying to fit what happened into some trope (why is his whiteness important?), without the slightest bit of evidence that the guy was attacking the Asian women because they were Asians. I’m not sure why you seem to feel strongly that he must have had something against Asians in the face of all the evidence we have.

      I am scratching my head a lot more about your forcing this narrative into a “submissive Asian/dominant white male” narrative than for Sullivan and others to say, “show me the evidence that he killed because he hated Asians.” And don’t forget, two out of his eight victims weren’t Asians.

    2. “Suppose that the women working in the spa were white or Hispanic instead of Asian (I’m assuming that sex work in spas is predominantly by Asian women in that area) and he killed them for exactly the same reason: they made him violate his oath not to have extramarital sex.”

      I’ve been thinking of it in a similar way: the guy killed sex workers in massage parlors, and it’s awful. The killer says their racial identity was incidental to their role as sex workers. The outrage in news stories is mostly about those women being Asian (and the killer being white).

      The people responsible for the race of the dead women are the gangsters who own and run the massage parlors, traffic poor Asian women & girls, and exploit them as sex workers. It seems pretty likely that those gangster sex traffickers are themselves Asian (that’s how it works in my city). So that would also conflict with the racism interpretation.

      But overall I would like to know who put those women in harm’s way? They bear some responsibility for what happened (but of course not as much as that of the killer himself).

    3. I have to disagree with you on what “safe” means in these situations. I don’t think it is about submissive Asians so much as it is about physical safety in terms of the transaction and acts performed.
      If one picks up a streetwalker on a corner, there are a number of dangers. You might be observed or set up by the vice cops. You might well be robbed and/or killed by the prostitute or her pimp. You would also have the added complication of where to go to complete the transaction.
      All of those risks are at least minimized at the massage parlor. Even the owner can often reasonably deny knowledge of exactly what goes on in the rooms.

      If someone were to go on a rampage because of their guilt over being unable to resist donuts, it is likely that a great many of their victims would be Cambodian. Not because donuts have Cambodian origins, but because the business model and recipes have been passed among members of that community, and they have found success at it. New refugees are hired, learn the business, and often in time get loans from within the community to start their own place.

      It appears that the erotic massage business spreads in a similar manner. It seems like the most difficult part of such a business would be recruiting the workers. The networks of people who arrange this are largely based in Asia, and would be difficult for an outsider to utilize. According to a DOJ study on the subject-
      The owners and managers of such businesses are usually former workers.

      1. That took a while to get through these 200+ pages. Great study, and thanks for that link Max.
        There are some shortcomings, of course. They limited themselves to the prostitutes from the PRC, for example. And even with their efforts to counter , you never know how much the answers were not ‘influenced’.
        A few things are clear though:
        – the overwhelming majority of PRC prostitutes came to the US (may we extend that to the whole of the West?) of their own volition, and most knew what for.
        – no significant coercion is involved in the US, at least for PRC women.
        – Most of it is driven by easy economic opportunity.

        And, of course, that the woke take on prostitution is naive.

        I’m far from sure this study can be extrapolated to women from other countries, or to other countries .

        Here in South Africa most street prostitutes appear to be their own agents, trying to get some money. There is also the notion of drug (ab)use. Apart from obvious prostitution, the line between prostitution and other sex is pretty fuzzy here, just think of sugar daddies and ‘blessers’

        The Nigerian syndicates involved with prostitution here, are reputed to use heroin and meths to get girls to engage in prostitution. Note these Nigerian syndicates appear to only control a limited share in the prostitution business, a majority appears to be self controlled, or in some kind of contract with ‘hotel’ managers.
        In fact I’m surprised nothing about drugs as a means of exertion came up in that study.

  10. In my neck of the woods and more precisely, in my neck of my neighborhood, adult massage spa workers are mostly of Eastern European and Russian ethnicity. And the most common characteristic of the type of men I see entering the facility is that they have larger than average bellies, and of many different colors.

    I suppose it could be true that the pandemic’s origins played over and over, over the past 15 months could be a subliminal trigger for a deranged mind that’s already armed and prepped to go ballistic, but we need to be careful as to when/how we use triggers in a cause-effect way, for take away the pandemic and replace it with Asian students successfully suing Harvard and other elite schools over admission requirements, and make that the big story of 2020, and now you have a positive story trigger entering a deranged mind. What I’m trying to say is that the most important factor that enables a deranged mind is that the mind is deranged. Chasing second and third hand triggers is a contortionist fool’s game.

    1. Asian women are often in the sex business whether it is message parlors, bars and strip joints and others. They are among the most exploited. I know many here are not familiar with it but the same is very true in the origin countries. I will name a couple in the Philippines and you can look them up if you want. Angeles city, now about 400,000 population is one. This use to be right next to Clark Air Force Base and was primarily supported by the base. The bars and clubs were non-stop. Olongapo is another one close by Subic Bay which was a huge Naval port. The U.S. military came to a sudden end in 1991 when Mount Pinatubo volcano erupted. This was the second largest eruption in the 20th century. However, you can look up Angeles city today and it still goes on. If I had to give a reason for what goes on there, it would be poverty.

      1. NPR had a piece on this just the other day. I believe it was Elsa Chang interviewing a professor from Biola about the perception of Asian women as being more likely to be sex workers than women of other races. If I recall correctly the statistics show that they are not but that the perception is that they are. They specifically mentioned the camps that spring up outside of US military bases in Asian countries as being part of the reason why Americans perceive Asian women to be more likely to be sex workers. I’m going to go back and give it another listen, as I was commuting the always lovely i5 at the time. But it’s good food for thought.

        1. Please note it is not just in the Philippines, to a lessor degree in Korea and other places. Also, even thought the bases in the Philippines are long gone, the trade goes on.

    2. I have a larger than average belly, thanks to my prediliction for dry red wines. Thank you.
      I doubt whether the COVID 19 drove him over the line. I think the easy availability of fire arms must carry some of the blame here. I agree with our host that the fact that most of his victims were Asian is collateral. The guy hates himself for indulging in prostitution, and many of the prostitutes in his area happened to be Asian. Of course, a rational being would have abdicated his idiotic religion, and a half reasonable being would rather have castrated himself.

      1. I just don’t buy the ‘I hate myself’ line not matter what he says. I see just another angry guy who could pick up a gun quick, so why not? He didn’t hurt himself, he didn’t resists arrest, he’ll get a lawyer and probably psych care. Shooting to kill takes anger, not self-loathing.

        1. True that. I did not want to stress his loathing himself, but his idiotic religion that effed him up sexually in the first place, and secondly frowns upon ‘harlots’ and other ‘witch-like’ women.
          And combine that brew with easy availability of firearms, and something like this is just waiting to happen.

  11. Hiding in plain sight: in Georgia it is easier to get a weapon that kills many people quickly, than it into get an abortion. Yet again, an angry white male decides he has the right to end the lives of a number of young women who happen to be Asian. The fact that they were working in a massage parlor is entirely incidental to the fact that ‘angry young white male’ decided to kill them. Do you think that massage parlors exist on other countries? Of course they do! But the people working in them and providing support for their families, usually don’t have to worry about being murdered. Only in America.

  12. I agree with the majority here – the fact they were Asian was of little import, despite the mainstream and woke media’s take on it. They seem desperate to “hate crime” the whole thing.
    Of much greater weight is the deranging effect religion has on people – particularly those who are mentally fragile and filled with rage already. Throw in some guns and easy access to them and you’ve got… Atlanta.

    “poisons everything” C.H.

  13. This reminds me of the case where an admitted Muslim extremist went into a nightclub and shot a number of people. When arrested he stated quite clearly why he went there and what he intended to do (Kill a large number of Americans to punish America for it’s actions in the Middle East). However to his bemusement the media insisted that because he went to a gay nightclub, his actual motivation was homophobia…

  14. “But it gets worse if the crime is sold as a “hate crime” when it’s not, for that gets an entire community of Americans scared and feeling ostracized.” I haven’t finished reading this posting because I had to stop and comment on this line. We are ALREADY feeling scared and ostracized – Duh! Of course, we’re going to look at the multiple Asian names and faces and make the connection with the year of China Virus/Kung Flu comments from that *!^&! and his ilk to call it hatred of Asians – the numbers don’t lie. It is a hate crime – hatred of women, conveniently packaged in a race/ethnicity that is believed to be quiet-peaceful-nonviolent (Buddhist? a religious angle) and easy pickings for chicken shite failures like this shooter. Look at the victims of prior anti-Asian attacks: old people and women, smaller and weaker and unarmed, arms full of groceries, leaning on canes, attacked from behind. Again, the numbers don’t lie.

    1. “His ilk”? You have no idea whether the accused killer was motivated by hatred of Asians, much less “Kung Flu”. Sorry, pal, but the DA will call this one, not you. And I’m glad you’re not the DA, because you’re making a snap judgment based on who was killed, and that’s not what a “hate crime” is. Previous attacks on Asians, well, that will have to be determined. It really ticks me off when people make kneejerk judgments like you’ve just done based on ZILCH knowledge of what motivated the killer.

  15. First of all, I do want to say that this was a HORRIBLE CRIME and that there definitely is a current of Anti-Asian sentiment here in this country, however NONE OF THE FACTS in this case point to a racially motivated incident. I do think that the increased crimes against Asian Americans PARTLY reflect the fact that they are a growing segment of the population, especially in larger cities with higher crime rates. In fact, I will put a target on my back now by saying that even the George Floyd incident was not specifically a racist incident. It is true that Black Americans are disproportionately involved in police violence, and yes, there are definitely cases where force was used against completely innocent people, as in the Breonna Taylor case. In my mind this is a function of the fact that the police trainings have become increasingly militarized, and our civil liberties are being slowly eroded away (no knock warrants, patriot act etc.) I do think that there was an unwarranted use of force with Floyd (he was already in handcuffs when the knee to the throat occurred) however the fact was that he was high as a kite and was unruly and disorderly. In addition, because of his past arrest record he was probably treated a little more gruffly than someone who had never been arrested before. But, to get back on track, the fact that most of the victims in this case were Asian does not make this particular incident any more of a hate crime than if it had been a Russian spa and all the girls had been Caucasian. It was just horrible, Sh*tty luck.

    1. “I do think that the increased crimes against Asian Americans PARTLY reflect the fact that they are a growing segment of the population, especially in larger cities with higher crime rates.”

      In other words, “Welcome to America!”

  16. This is just bizarre. That we are having a debate where the “right wing” position is to say that when there’s no evidence that something is a hate crime, maybe you shouldn’t assume it’s a hate crime anyways, just shows how far the Overton Window has shifted at this point. How are we in a place where we’re supposed to by default assume that crimes are hate crimes before any actual evidence points to this?

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