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Family & Relationships The shooter blamed sex addiction, but experts have no doubt the Atlanta killings were racially motivated

10:16  19 march  2021
10:16  19 march  2021 Source:   msn.com

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The Atlanta shooting suspect blamed sex addiction for his attacks, but When he was questioned by the police about killing eight people — six of them Asian women — at However, sex addiction is not classified by experts as a mental health disorder. "The real problem there is that sex addiction treatment has no known effectiveness at treating pedophilia or criminal sexual behavior."

Sex addiction is “not an officially recognized diagnosis,” Michael Vigorito, a marriage and family therapist and co-author of the book Treating Out of Control Sexual Behavior: Rethinking Sex Addiction , told Vox. In the case of the Atlanta suspect, sex addiction could also be a distraction from other factors at play. For example, the idea has already been used by authorities as a way of dismissing the idea that the attacks, which killed six women of Asian descent, might have been motivated by racism.

a sign lit up at night: Crime scene tape cordons off the area around Gold Spa after the deadly Atlanta-area shootings on March 16. Reuters/Chris Aluka Berry © Provided by INSIDER Crime scene tape cordons off the area around Gold Spa after the deadly Atlanta-area shootings on March 16. Reuters/Chris Aluka Berry
  • Suspect in Atlanta spa shootings allegedly said he was motivated by a sex addiction, not race.
  • However, experts say that the shootings tie into America's history of violence against Asian women.
  • "It's impossible to take race out of the equation," Ellen Wu, expert in Asian American Studies said.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Police say that the 21-year-old white man responsible for the the Atlanta-area shootings that left eight people dead - including six Asian women - told them he was motivated not by racism, but by his sex addiction.

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Suspect in Atlanta spa shootings allegedly said he was motivated by a sex addiction , not race. However, experts say that the shootings tie into America's history of violence against Asian women. "It's impossible to take race out of the equation," Ellen Wu, expert in Asian American Studies said. Grace Kao, Chair & IBM Professor of Sociology at Yale University, told Insider she has no doubt that the shooting was motivated by race and gender. "He targeted Asian American women working at establishments catering to people who wanted contact with Asian American women," Kao said.

Atlanta massage parlor shooting suspect Robert Aaron Long took "responsibility" for the string of Tuesday night attacks that left eight people dead and another person injured, authorities said Wednesday. Police officials said the investigation is ongoing, but the events were not believed to have been racially motivated . Investigators are still working to determine the motive , but said the victims could have been "targets of opportunity," Reynolds said. The attacks began Tuesday evening when five people were shot at Young's Asian Massage Parlor near Woodstock, about 30 miles north of Atlanta

In a Wednesday morning press conference, Cherokee County police confirmed that Robert Aaron Long, "took responsibility" for the shootings. Long told police that he previously visited the massage parlors where the shootings took place. Police said he may have been "lashing out" by trying to eliminate temptation, but declined not comment on whether sex work took place at the massage parlors.

While police say the investigation so far indicates the shootings may not be racially motivated, experts say sexualization and race are intrinsically linked to violence against Asian American women. Asian women, and especially Asian sex workers, have long been sexualized, objectified, and dehumanized in a way that makes them especially vulnerable to violence.

The suspect in the Atlanta-area shootings that killed 8 people, 6 of them Asian women, is a 21-year-old white man who blamed a sex addiction for the attacks

  The suspect in the Atlanta-area shootings that killed 8 people, 6 of them Asian women, is a 21-year-old white man who blamed a sex addiction for the attacks Robert Aaron Long, 21, of Woodstock, Georgia, was arrested in connection to shootings at three massage parlors in the Atlanta metro area on Tuesday.Six out of eight of the victims were Asian women, and had taken place at three massage parlors within an hour of each other on Tuesday.

Long stated that his actions were not racially motivated , but instead related to his sexual addiction .[11][25] According to the Cherokee County Sheriff, Long wanted to "eliminate the temptation" by targeting massage parlors.[25][26] He allegedly spent time in rehabilitation for sexual addiction in 2020 and felt "tortured" by his addiction to sex as he was deeply. A terrorism expert compared the Atlanta shootings to a February 2020 machete attack in Toronto, Canada; in that case, the suspect, a 17-year-old male, was motivated by an incel ideology, which is centered around misogyny.

Liberals blame trump, republicans and racism for atlanta shootings, before police determine motive . Behar didn’t buy it, following several other prominent members of the mainstream media who have blamed Trump and racism for the murders despite a lack of evidence. Behar then asked producers to play footage of Trump referring to the coronavirus by a variety of nicknames, including “Kung Flu.” Atlanta shooting suspect tells police attacks not racially motivated , was purportedly driven by sex addiction .

"There's a perception that [Asian] women should be sexually available to men"

a person sitting on a bench in front of a flower: Mourners visit a makeshift shrine to the victims at Gold Spa on March 17. Megan Varner/Getty Images © Megan Varner/Getty Images Mourners visit a makeshift shrine to the victims at Gold Spa on March 17. Megan Varner/Getty Images

Grace Kao, Chair & IBM Professor of Sociology at Yale University, told Insider she has no doubt that the shooting was motivated by race and gender.

"He targeted Asian American women working at establishments catering to people who wanted contact with Asian American women," Kao said.

Kao said that the shootings tie into a long American history of violence stemming from the sexualization of Asian American women. That history goes back to the mid-19th century, when many of the Chinese women who immigrated to America were either sex workers or perceived as such. The Page Act of 1875 banned Chinese women from entering the US for "lewd and immoral purposes," and laid the groundwork for the passage of the infamous Chinese Exclusion Act just seven years later.

Sheriff's Deputy Jay Baker's press conference on the Atlanta spa shootings was a master class in victim blaming

  Sheriff's Deputy Jay Baker's press conference on the Atlanta spa shootings was a master class in victim blaming Baker said the victims were killed because they were a "temptation" to professed shooter Robert Long, and said Long was just having a "very bad day" when he committed the crimes. Baker's comments during a press conference Wednesday intimated the victims were sex workers. He said that Long was trying to "take out that temptation" by shooting them. Visit Insider's homepage for more stories. On Tuesday evening a shooter killed eight people - six of whom were Asian women - during a violent killing spree at three Atlanta-area spas.

Mass shooting suspect says attacks ‘ motivated by anger at his sex addition’, police claim. A man charged with killing eight people at three different massage parlours in a horrific mass shooting did it to remove sexual temptation, police allege. Frank Reynolds, Cherokee County Sheriff, said the suspect may have a “ sexual addiction ” and “may have frequented some of these places in the past,” but said they were too early into their investigation to determine if racial hatred could have been involved. He added that police believed Mr Long had visited the three spas regularly as a customer.

Atlanta shooter Robert Long blamed his actions on sex addiction , not racism. Here’s why this narrative is problematic. “It’s still early, but he does claim that it was not racially motivated ,” Captain Jay Baker of the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said of the shooter during the March 17th press conference. “He apparently has an issue, what he considers a sex addiction , and sees these locations [massage parlors] as something that allows him to go to these places and — it’s a temptation for him that he wanted to eliminate.”

"There's a perception that [Asian] women should be sexually available to men," Kao said. "I think it would be really dangerous to assume that race had nothing to do with it."

Ellen Wu, Associate Professor of History and the Director of Asian American Studies at Indiana University Bloomington, says that the sexualization of Asian women historically goes hand-in-hand with other dehumanizing stereotypes about Asian Americans.

"All these ideas we see now have a long history going back to the 19th century," Wu told Insider. "Women were assumed to be immoral or loose. Chinese in general were thought of as sneaky, deviants, undermining the American way of life, and possibly disease-carrying."

Nancy Wang Yuen, an associate professor of sociology at Biola University, told Insider that these early thoughts and policies, including the Page Act, shaped the anti-Asian tropes and narratives that still play out in society and Hollywood today.

"There's a whole history of not just violence against Asian women, but a framing of Asian women as prostitutes and fetishized objects of exploitation," said Yuen, who authored the book "Reel Inequality: Hollywood Actors and Racism."

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"There's actually a sort of systemic framing of east Asian women as both objects to be desired, and objects to keep out," she added. "They're fetishized, but we shouldn't let them in because, right?, because they're going to corrupt us."

Resentment and outright hostility towards Chinese immigrants led to in multiple racially-motivated massacres during the Gold Rush Era, including the Chinese massacre of 1871, which resulted in the death of 10% of the Chinese population of Los Angeles at the time.

The sexual stereotypes associated with Asian women were reinforced through over a century of US military activities in Asia. Military men in Asian countries usually encountered Asian women in the context of romance or sex work, and those experiences quickly influenced mainstream stereotypes of Asian women, Wu said, especially in media depictions.

"Because of the US's long history of military engagement in Asia, there's a historical pattern where white Americans do not value Asian people as equal human beings," Wu said. "It's impossible to take race out of the equation."

Hate against Asian Americans has skyrocketed since the beginning of COVID-19

a group of people holding a sign: A man holds a sign that reads © Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images A man holds a sign that reads "Racism is a Virus" during the "We Are Not Silent" rally against anti-Asian hate in Seattle, Washington on March 13, 2021. Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, some leaders - including former President Donald Trump - have blamed the pandemic on China, because it was hit with the earliest outbreak.

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Trump referred to the virus as the "Wuhan virus," "the China virus, "the China plague," and even "Kung Flu" with the racist terms quickly catching on among right-wing Americans.

"Asian-American bodies are seen as carriers of this disease that came from Asia," Kao said.

This month, an 83-year-old Korean woman was spat on, punched, and knocked unconscious in White Plains, New York. On March 9, police arrested a California woman was arrested on anti-Asian hate crime in connection with several instances where they believed she spit at, yelled racial slurs, and made racist comments to Asian-Americans on several occasions.

Yuen told Insider, that a combination of age-old anti-Asian racism, linked with recent rhetoric linking the virus to China - which the CDC and WHO advised against - have played a role in the recent attacks.

"Asia has always been seen as exotic and foreign, and I think as a result of that is Asians are never fully accepted as Americans," Yuen said. "There is a scapegoating of Asians for a variety of reasons - economic, political, cultural, medical. Whenever there is something negative associated with Asia proper, Asian Americans suffer."

The reporting center Stop AAPI Hate, which tracks hate incidents against Asians and Pacific Islanders around the US, has been closely following attacks that have happened since the start of the coronavirus-related shutdowns.

Among the reports the group created last year was one that specifically tracked incidents in Georgia. From March 20, 2020 and October 28, 2020, Stop AAPI Hate received 32 reports of hate that occurred in the state, according to a report. While 80% of the reports were related to verbal harassment and shunning, 20% involved physical assaults.

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Women have experienced hate at three times the rate of men in Georgia, according to the coalition, highlighting the vulnerability to violence that Asian women face.

Kao said that although many people initially linked the Atlanta shootings to the COVID-era rise of anti-Asian hate crimes, she "very quickly thought it had more to do with the objectification of Asian-American women.

Yuen told Insider that it's much too soon to rule out that the suspect in the Atlanta-area shootings wasn't motivated by racism - conscious or not - in addition to sex.

"All we know about the motivation so far is from the murderer himself. How can we use that as evidence as his motive?" she asked.

"Why is there a kind of targeting of Asian women at this specific time?" she added. "Is it just a coincidence? It's hard to imagine that its just coincidence even if it's just subconsciously."

At the press conference on Wednesday, reporters asked officials whether there was any indication that Long previously had sex at the massage parlor he is accused of attacking.

"We are not about to get into victim blaming, victim shaming," Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said in response.

Yuen told Insider that whether or not the women were sex workers is not important. To her, it's clear that the victims were seen as sexual objects by the shooter.

"He obviously kind of insinuated that by saying he wanted to get rid of the temptation as someone who is addicted to sex," she said. "I think the problem is, of course, that people may use the sort of moral argument to somehow belittle the crime. But at the same time, nobody, no matter their occupation, deserves to be murdered."

Wu said a combination of factors, including gender, class, wealth, and legal status, position Asian women to be "vulnerable to violence in some distinct ways."

In a Tweet, Red Canary Song, -- a nonprofit that advocates for employees of Chinese massage parlors and sex workers -- said that the conversation around the Georgia attack shouldn't be centered around the recent uptick in pandemic-related violence, but rather on the long history of policing Asian sex work, "which so many Asian Americans and those speaking up against anti-Asian hate endorse."

"This is horrific, and is indicative of the violence that massage workers face daily," the group tweeted. "We are saddened and angered to learn of this, and we are sending our love to the workers in Atlanta."

Yuen said that she hopes that investigators deciding whether to prosecute the attacks as hate crimes dig a little deeper than simply allowing long to describe his motivation to them.

"Just because he's not conscious of his racism, it shouldn't take away from the fact that it could be both sexually and racially motivated," Yuen said. "I feel like we've come further in our understanding of unconscious bias than to only prosecute a hate crime if someone is blatantly saying something racist. It discounts that that's not how racism operates always."

Read the original article on Insider

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