On the evening of July 7, 2020, during the Vacaville Unified School District (VUSD) hearing on whether to reopen classes for the 2020-2021 school year, a woman testified that VUSD schools should be reopened for the following reasons:
- The coronavirus case is in the past (implying there is no current threat)
- “We are 200 days out from just do this or just do that”
- The kids are not at risk
- Stop pedaling the corona hoax
- “Please do not ‘China’ my kid’s school”
- “Please do not ‘China’ my America”
- We are a free nation.
- “Open the schools, you don’t have to send the kids to school if you don’t want to.”
Her testimony was videotaped and is available for viewing at the following site: https://drive.google.com/file/d/18- LMTNSqQ8_ObPQcUvTVNThQhxvYu3p5/view?usp=sharing
Although we believe in her rights to free speech, and she is free to believe that the pandemic is just a hoax and is now long over, we find her fifth and sixth points, “Please do not ‘China’ my kid’s school” and “Please do not ‘China’ my America” divisive and offensive.
Ever since, President Trump and his administration characterized COVID-19 as the “Chinese Virus”, the “Wuhan Virus”, and the “Kung Flu” against the advice of the World Health Organization’s 2015 systems of best practice in naming new diseases, there has been an upsurge of verbal and physical abuses on Chinese and Asian Americans.
While verbal saber-rattling between U.S. and China is not new, this deliberate move to associate Wuhan and China with the COVID pandemic has significantly impacted the civility in our society, the denial of accountability and responsibility by our government, and the general degradation of public health methods in bringing COVID-19 under control.
For the above reasons, APAPA urges the Vacaville Unified School Board to publicly denounce on the record the inflammatory expressions of “Please do not ‘China’ my kid’s school” and “Please do not ‘China’ my America” and any similar future divisive expressions. Under the VUSD Governance Standards, “Board members also shall assume collective responsibility for building unity and creating a positive organizational culture.”
It’s up to all of us to speak up in order to build that shining city upon a hill that welcomes all people who dare to dream that “American Dream.”