Sandra Oh is calling for an end to anti-Asian violence in the wake of the shooting rampage in three Atlanta-area spas this week that left eight people dead, including six women of Asian descent.
The “Grey’s Anatomy” alum joined thousands across the country who rallied in various cities over the weekend to demand justice for the victims of the shootings and decry the recent surge in hate crimes against Asian Americans.
On Saturday, Oh made a surprise appearance at a Stop Asian Hate rally in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she’s currently filming her new Netflix series “The Chair.”
After introducing herself and thanking the organizers for giving supporters the “opportunity to be together, stand together and feel each other,” Oh addressed the crowd with a brief but stirring speech.
“For many of us in our community, this is the first time we are even able to voice our fear and our anger, and I really am so grateful for everyone willing to listen,” Oh, holding a megaphone, said in videos, which have been widely shared across social media. “One thing that I know is that many in our community are very scared, and I understand that. And one way to go through our fear is to reach out to our community.”
BREAKING: Sandra Oh speaks at a “Stop Asian Hate” demonstration in Oakland to about 250 people.
“I am proud to be Asian,” she says. “We belong here.” pic.twitter.com/BCAtBpn4QQ
— Rebecca Johnson (@rebeccapaigejo) March 20, 2021
Actress Sandra Oh speaks during the Stop Asian Hate rally in Pittsburgh pic.twitter.com/Bgels4hNio
— Kristina Serafini (@KristinaS_Trib) March 20, 2021
“To everyone here … I will challenge everyone here, if you see something, will you help me? If you see one of our sisters and brothers in need, will you help us?” she said, as the people chanted, “Yes!” in response. “We must understand, as Asian Americans, we just need to reach out our hand to our sisters and brothers and say, ‘Help me and I’m here.’”
Oh concluded her speech by yelling, “I am proud to be Asian! I belong here!” before encouraging other community members to do the same.
“Many of us don’t get that chance to be able to say that, so I just wanted to give us an opportunity to be able to shout that,” she said.
Days before the rally, Oh posted on Instagram about the Atlanta shootings with a message directing her followers to support and donate to several organizations benefitting the Asian community.
The “Killing Eve” star is one of a slew of celebrities to condemn anti-Asian violence in recent days. Gemma Chan, Lana Condor, Rihanna, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ariana Grande, Daniel Dae Kim and others have spoken out publicly against the attacks.
“Please pay attention to what is happening. This is the latest in a surge of horrific attacks on the Asian community,” Chan wrote on Instagram earlier this week. “Racism and misogyny are not mutually exclusive. In fact, sexualised racial harassment and violence is something that many of us face regularly.”
“Wake up… your Asian friends and family are deeply scared, horrified, sick to their stomachs, and wildly angry,” Condor added in a separate post. “Please please please check in on us, please please please stand with us. Please. Your Asian friend needs you, even if they aren’t publicly grieving on social media.”
Wake up... your Asian friends and family are deeply scared, horrified, sick to their stomachs and wildly angry. Please please please check in on us, please please please stand with us. Please. Your Asian friend needs you, even if they aren’t publicly grieving on social media. x
— Lana Condor (@lanacondor) March 17, 2021
Earlier this week, Kim made an appearance in front of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties to urge lawmakers to pass bills addressing racism and discrimination against Asian Americans.
“There are several moments in a country’s history that chart its course indelibly for the future. For Asian Americans, that moment is now,” the Korean-American actor said in his speech. “What happens right now and over the course of the coming months will send a message for generations to come as to whether we matter, whether the country we call home chooses to erase us or include us, dismiss us or respect us, invisibilize us or see us. Because you may consider us statistically insignificant now, but one more fact that has no alternative is that we are the fastest-growing racial demographic in the country. We are 23 million strong. We are united, and we are waking up.”
Daniel Dae Kim on House bill condemning anti-Asian sentiment: "I was disheartened to find that for a bill that required no money or resources, just a simple condemnation of acts of hate ...164 members of Congress—all Republican—voted against it." https://t.co/Apq0AYUMdR pic.twitter.com/B2ZY10Rwlo
— ABC News (@ABC) March 18, 2021