During the COVID-19 pandemic, racism towards the API communities (Asian Pacific Islanders) has only increased. Now more than ever, it is crucial that we come together to stand up against social injustices such as this and show our support for these communities.
This is why Chicago Cultural Alliance has partnered with RAAD, Random Acts of API Defiance, for Take Out Racism, a campaign they created in response to the rise of animosity and xenophobia toward APIs in America from the beginning of COVID-19.
RAAD is a collective of queer API scholars, artists, and designers committed to combating racism through bold creative interventions. Their belief system is entirely built upon not only independent work but also in partnership with ally organizations—to advance equity for all people and amplify the collective voice of underrepresented communities.
As described on their website: RAAD designed the Take Out Racism campaign as a call-to-action for APIs and their allies to root out discrimination in US politics and culture. Posters are the first in a series of tactical interventions designed to contest the racist identification of Covid-19 as a “Chinese virus,” while overturning the “model minority” myth of APIs more generally. Our campaign hijacks the common association of TAKE OUT with cheap, undifferentiated “Asian cuisine” to foreground the racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity of APIs in this country. It is both a celebration of API solidarity-in-difference and a call for APIs to TAKE OUT systemic racism alongside other BIPOC communities—defiantly and together.
In partnership with RAAD’s Take Out Racism campaign, the Alliance will periodically share stories and content from members of the API communities as this relates to our shared mission of equity and cultural inclusion. The work of Chicago Cultural Alliance promotes, connects, and supports 40 cultural heritage centers throughout the city in pursuit of allowing all cultural voices to feel heard and we are proud to support taking out racism.