Billionaire doctor and Los Angeles Times owner Patrick Soon-Shiong expressed his dismay at the recent racism in the United States on CNN Business. Soon-Shiong is of Chinese descent and was born in South Africa where he witnessed Apartheid out open.
“I came from South Africa, where I saw [racism] growing up,” he said. “The difference, in a funny way, is that it was Apartheid, but it was Apartheid in the open. So coming to this county as an Asian American, African Asian American, Chinese, I thought we were coming to the land of the free and frankly, I’ve been completely disenchanted.
“When you saw what happened with Black Lives Matter and what happened here. This unconscious bias and racism is pervasive, It’s almost inherent, sadly, in the historic fabric of this country. We have to recognize that, accept and then break it cause this country will not proceed to a level of what I call enlightenment until we understand it and have empathy and break it.”
Patrick Soon-Shiong said he was heartbroken after he saw the video of the 65-year-old Filipino American woman Vilma Kari viciously beaten in Manhattan and nobody coming to her aid.
“The lack of empathy for the human being whether she’s Asian, green, black, blue, that’s a human being, a 65-year-old lady in severe distress and that nobody would help her and close the door on her was heartbreaking,” he said. “So what goes through my mind is this country better wake up to this because it becomes something this next generation will have to deal with.”
Soon-Shiong immigrated from the United States in 1977 and he recalled a time during his surgical residency in UCLA when a professor was racist against him.
“One professor from UCLA that had a house next door quite openly said, ‘We don’t like people like you here,'” he recalled. “It was pretty blatant.”
Soon-Shiong said the Asian mentality of sucking it up and being quiet can no longer happen.
“Unfortunately, the Asian culture and mentality is to just suck it up,” he said. “Do your work Do your thing. Be quite. I don’t think that can happen any longer … So I think people like myself need to make it very public what happens to us. When I say us is not us and them to any human being we should respect each other.”
Patrick Soon-Shiong attributed some of the rise in anti-Asian hatred on President Trump’s racist rhetoric against China.