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How Outbreaks Like The Coronavirus Can Give A Platform To Prejudice

As fear of the new coronavirus continues to spread, Chinese and other Asian Americans have been feeling the impact.

The Phoenix Chinese Culture and Cuisine Festival celebrated the Chinese New Year over the weekend. Meng Ansley was one of the organizers, and she said news of the coronavirus did have an effect on this year’s festivities.

“We did see some impact. We did not have as high attendance as last year — maybe about 30 to 40% less than last year," said Ansley.

She said food vendors in particular noticed a smaller crowd than usual. They saw fewer children and members of the Chinese communities attended.

Business that cater mostly to Chinese customers told her they’ve seen more of a drop in business than those that cater mostly to non-Chinese folks. That meant the festival actually had to cancel some of its activities because of a lack of participants.

The festival was prepared, though. In addition to the traditional dances, crafts, musical and martial arts performances and food, the festival also had the tools to ward off germs in general.

“We had sanitizers and wipes and tissue paper on the tables and every booth. This is a big flu season, so, generally, everybody’s taking precautions. It’s not just because of the virus.”

Some students at Arizona State University have felt the social effects of the virus, too.

Tevinh Nguyen is the president of the Asian/Asain Pacific American Students’ Coalition and has been hearing from his peers about recent encounters with racism from other students.

He joined The Show to talk about what is happening on campus.

The Show also talked with Louis Mendoza, the director of Arizona State University’s School of Humanities, Arts and Culture. He’s written about how disease outbreaks can often give voice to racist agendas.

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Kaely Monahan joined KJZZ Original Productions as a producer in December 2016.Monahan is a native, and growing up in the East Valley gave her an intimate familiarity with the Valley of the Sun. Eager to experience a new city, she left Phoenix for Tucson to earn her degree in classical studies from the University of Arizona with an emphasis in mythology. Several years later, her focus transitioned from history to history-in-the-making and news. Monahan went on to earn her master’s degree in international journalism from City University of London.In London, Monahan worked with CBS News and The Times covering international news. On her return to Arizona, Monahan was the art and entertainment editor for the East Valley Tribune, before moving into broadcasting, where she worked in commercial radio as an anchor and reporter.Outside of work, Monahan spends her time reading historical novels, exploring new restaurants in the Valley, and watching movies. Her love of film led her to create a movie review podcast and website. Monahan is also the vice president of the Phoenix Critics Circle.