'Absolutely disgusted': Racist note left at shop among Chinese restaurant strip

A racist note has been left at a Melbourne store, on a strip where many businesses were vandalised.

George Hua, a councillor for the City of Kingston, first shared a picture with the note and images of the store located on the Clayton Road shopping strip.

“Many shops along the Clayton Road shopping strip, mostly Chinese restaurants, were smashed. Sadly, it is an attack on the local Chinese community and local businesses!” he wrote on Facebook earlier this week.

“I strongly condemn such racism and violent behaviour. Local businesses are already doing [it] tough through the prolonged lockdown. Now another attack?!”

In a statement to Yahoo News Australia, Victoria Police said there was no evidence the note was connected to the vandalism. A 28-year-old Clayton South woman was arrested for the vandalism on September 7.

“There is no evidence to suggest the incidents [the damage to the stores] are racially motivated,” Victoria Police said.

The handwritten note was racially-fuelled and called for Chinese people to “go back to where you came from”.

A picture of the note seen.
City of Monash mayor, Stuart James, shared the note earlier this month. Source: Twitter

“You have contaminated the whole world, killed millions - you are murderers,” the note says.

“You are greedy, corrupt criminals - you take our jobs - our land - our business! And our lives, please p**s off!”

The note then said “you will never be Australia”, because “you don’t look like us”or “respect us”.

No place for racist views says Monash mayor

City of Monash Mayor, Stuart James, also shared the note to his Twitter on Wednesday to condemn the anonymous author.

“I am absolutely filthy and disgusted at the letter below that was posted on a shop window in Clayton not that long ago,” he tweeted.

“This country has been built on the back of migrants from all around the world who came here seeking a better life for them and their families.”

The mayor said there was “no place in this country”, or in the City of Monash for the racist views the author expressed.

“The author of this cowardly anonymous, vile and pathetic attack on a fellow Australian needs to pull his/her head in,” Mr James said.

“Being born in Australia does not make you any more Australian than anyone else. Nor does it give you the right to make unprovoked racist attacks on innocent people.

“In fact, it is people like the author of this letter, and the views within it, that do not belong.”

There have been several racist attacks amid the coronavirus pandemic directed towards Asian-Australians.

Chinese blamed for COVID-19 as 500 racist incidents reported

“The letter is an example of the vile racism which has been happening in Australia for most of this year,” Erin Chew, the National Convener for the Asian Australian Alliance and co-author of the COVID-19 Racism Incident Report told Yahoo News Australia.

“The mainstream tabloid media in Australia was very quick to label COVID-19 as the "Chinese virus" early on and blamed the ‘apparent’ eating habits of Chinese people and more broadly Asian people for the spread of COVID.”

Ms Chew explained there had been almost 500 incidents of racism reported amid the pandemic and 31 per cent of Australians blamed Chinese people for COVID-19.

“To read this letter and know that it was targeted at a Chinese/Asian Australian store owner demonstrates the ignorance, hate and how misinformed many Australians are,” she said.

“The content of the letter is nothing new and it is not surprising due to the anti-Chinese/Asian sentiments currently floating around in Australia.”

A delivery driver is seen on Bourke Street in Melbourne, Sunday, September 6, 2020. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has confirmed some COVID-19 restrictions will soon be eased but Melbourne's curfew will remain until at least October 26.
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, many Asian-Australians have been subject to racial abuse. Source: AAP

Ms Chew said she is a proud Chinese/Asian Australian who advocates against racism, however she admitted she is fearful to even walk outside, knowing she could be targeted.

Mr James said he hoped the author of the note sees his string of tweets and “has a good, hard look at him/herself” and called for unity during the unprecedented period.

“United we stand, divided we fall,” he said.

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