The House Judiciary Subcommittee held a hearing Thursday morning to address the discrimination of and violence toward Asian Americans, where Korean-American actor Daniel Dae Kim spoke out before lawmakers urging them to pass measures that would condemn that discrimination. The “Good Doctor,” “Hawaii Five-O,” and “Lost” actor spoke alongside other activists, scholars, and lawmakers following a shooting spree that ended eight lives in Georgia on Wednesday, including six Asian women.
“I’m both honored and dismayed to be back in front of you again,” Kim said. “Some of you may remember that I was with you, just this past September, discussing the importance of diversity in American media,” referring to a September plea toward Republicans to legislate anti-racism measures.
“You may recall that the reason I was moved to speak then was because the House had just recently passed HR 908, condemning all forms of anti-Asian sentiment, but I was disheartened to find that for a bill that required no money or resources, just a simple condemnation of acts of hate against people of Asian descent, 164 members of Congress, all Republican, voted against it,” the actor continued. “And now here I am again, because as every witness in this hearing has pointed out, the situation has gotten worse.”
On Wednesday, Kim also tweeted as part of #StopAsianHate, pointing to a 2020 video showing how former President Trump amplified anti-Asian sentiment in his handling of the coronavirus.
At the House Judiciary hearing, Kim added, “There are several moments in a country’s history that chart its course indelibly for the future. For Asian Americans, that moment is now. 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.”
Watch Kim’s address to Congress in the video below.
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