End Anti-Asian Violence
IPMF helps build power with communities across Greater Philadelphia by investing in community-owned media and community-led media-making. We are pursuing a vision of media and media-making as a force for change and justice, for fostering understanding, bringing people together, and strengthening the fabric of our multi-racial, multi-ethnic, and multi-gender communities.
Our hearts are heavy with the tragic murders of eight people in Atlanta specifically targeting Asian women. Anti-Asian violence and racism is fueled in part by media that, intentionally or not, perpetuates racist and misogynist stereotypes, language and images of our Asian American and Pacific Islander neighbors.
In the wake of the murders, much of the immediate rush to coverage featured authorities centering the murderer's story and dismissing that his motives were racist or misogynist. Instead, the reporting should have been led by AAPI journalists and community members, centering careful and compassionate stories of the victims, their families, and their communities. The reporting should be helping us gain a deeper understanding of the long history of anti-Asian violence, which is deeply intertwined with the history of violence against women, in this country, and it should be shedding light on systemic solutions for ending the hate.
Words matter. Stories matter. It matters when the reporting makes excuses for violence and erases the people experiencing the violence. There is a cumulative effect of stories like these, and of racist images across media platforms, that dehumanizes people, and carries water for those who enact oppressive laws and policies targeting communities of color.
In our work, we're focused on multiple ways that we can bring resources and opportunities to communities of color to tell their own stories, to create narratives that lift up the beauty and joy and complexity of their lives, and that reject simplistic descriptions and histories. We also support people's access to and ability to navigate digital technology as both consumers and producers of news and information. We do this through grants, as well as through ongoing non-profit coaching and workshop opportunities, while also sharing the inspiring work of our partners, and encouraging other funders to join us in supporting community-centered media.
We are also supporting a reimagining of local journalism by urging newsrooms to interrogate and change who gets to tell the stories, who their sources are, what stories get told, and how those stories are told.
When journalism values speed and sensationalism over nuance and care for people's lives as it did in Atlanta, it needlessly compounds the trauma. We remain committed to dismantling racist media and business models that make money off of people's pain. We are also optimistic for the future of media, and we are committed to a vision of journalism that so thoroughly fulfills its public service mission, it helps manifest a world free from oppression.
We mourn with and stand in solidarity now and every day with the AAPI community.
“Stop Asian Hate Crimes” image by Lauren YS
Please do not use this image without permission from the artist.