“I was shocked … I did not know what to do .. and it slowly escalated in a way that he came close to me and he kept shouting at me for no reason,” Sakura Kokumai, a Team USA Karate Olympian, told ABC7 in an interview.
“You’re so small,” the man is heard saying in the footage. “I f — your girlfriend up.”
“There were no racial slurs in the beginning,” Kokumai said, “but when he got into his car, he shouted ̵
Sakura Kokumai says she worked at Grijalva Park – just like she does every day as she prepares for the Olympics. She is ready to represent the United States at the Tokyo Games this summer – as the first American to qualify for the Karate Olympics.
Doormen fired after failing to intervene in vicious attack on Asian woman in NYC
That’s why she says she was so calm: she knew that if she had to, she could strike back. She said the man out of nowhere started harassing her for almost 20 minutes.
“You know what? If this was my mother … what if this was my grandmother … it was here, it got scary because I knew I was able to cope with the situation by being calm. , “said Kokumai. “You will not be aggressive. But my concern was, what if this was someone else?”
By 2020, there were ten times as many hate incidents and crimes against Asian Americans in Orange County. A majority of these crimes were public, according to the Orange County Human Relations Commission.
Just last month, an 82-year-old Asian American woman at the retirement community Leisure World in Seal Beach received a letter the day of her husband’s funeral – it said his death was a good thing because it meant “a lesser Asian to find oneself in. “
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