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Blaming the Atlanta Shooting on ‘Temptation’ Glosses Over Its Racism

Blaming the Atlanta Shooting on ‘Temptation’ Glosses Over Its Racism

The day after last week’s mass shooting in Atlanta, the first thing I did when I woke up was check my phone. But hearing a white American man use the words “sex addiction” and “temptation” to downplay horrific violence against marginalized Asian women struck a very specific nerve for me. The alleged perpetrator’s narrative purposefully draws on a longstanding history of Western men fetishizing, thus dehumanizing Asian women. Captain Baker directly facilitated this goal by framing the mass violence in Atlanta as a man being “at the end of his rope” looking to “eliminate” the exotic “temptation”. At this point, it’s both impossible and dishonest to ignore how Orientalist misogyny factors into the mass shooting in Atlanta.