Resistance is Not Futile: Challenging AAPI Hate
U of Colorado Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 21-22
133 Pages Posted: 2 Jun 2021 Last revised: 29 Sep 2021
Date Written: May 23, 2021
This Article analyzes how to challenge AAPI (Asian American Pacific Islander) hate, defined as explicit negative bias in racial beliefs towards AAPIs. In economics, beliefs are subjective probabilities over possible outcomes. Traditional neoclassical economics views beliefs as inputs to making decisions, with more accurate beliefs having indirect, instrumental value by improving decision-making. This Article utilizes novel economic theories about belief-based utility, which captures economically the intuitive notion that people can derive pleasure and pain directly from their and other people’s beliefs. Even false beliefs can offer comfort and reassurance to people. This Article also draws on interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary theories about deliberate ignorance, defined as the conscious choice by individuals to ignore certain knowledge or particular information.
This Article studies how to change people’s beliefs about what a person of a certain race is likely to do, will do, or has done. This Article defines explicit racism to entail hateful racial beliefs, which can be due to disinformation or misinformation. Hateful beliefs can fuel misunderstanding and violence. This Article focuses on challenging AAPI hate due to the author’s experiences with AAPI hate. This Article examines how and why explicit racism is wrong. This Article analyzes subjective beliefs, hate crime laws, and explicit racism. This Article advocates three ways to challenge AAPI hate: positive racial education and mindfulness, positive racial conversations and communications, and positive racial associations, cultures, and norms.
Keywords: AAPI hate, explicit bias, explicit racism, belief-based utility, deliberate ignorance, positive racial education and mindfulness, positive racial conversations and communications, positive racial associations, cultures, and norms
JEL Classification: D63, D74, D81, D83, I18, J15, J18, K14
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation