A video showing a man who allegedly harassed a group of Asian women for wearing masks while dancing to K-pop in public has gone viral on TikTok.
What happened: TikTok user @celenana_na and her K-pop dance group, Hush Crew, were filming a dance routine in Boston’s Downtown Crossing on Sunday when the incident occurred. What they thought was an ordinary interaction escalated after the man allegedly started talking about communism and they realized he was being racist.
The group was in between takes when the man first engaged with them, @celenana_na said in a follow-up post. There were others who approached them asking questions about their work, so they did not mind him at first.
@celenana_na said they thought the man was joking when he asked why they were wearing masks. “But then he started talking about communism and all that stuff, and that’s when it hit us that he was being racist toward us, just because we’re Asian people wearing masks,” she recalled.
@celenana_na claimed the man approached her boyfriend first. She decided to film the scene when the man increasingly got close to their space.
“Put that sh*t down,” the man says in the video while trying to grab @celenana_na’s phone. She yells in response, “No, this is America! I get to do whatever the f*ck I want. I get to wear [my mask], he gets to wear his mask.”
The video also shows a third man approaching the scene. He reportedly intervened by pulling the belligerent man to the side to keep the group safe.
@celenana_nawe have the right to wear masks like how he has the right to be ugly tf #stayc #stereotype #kpopinpublic #harrassed #asian #covid #kpop #kpopfyp♬ stereotype x dalla dalla - .
Reactions: The video has received more than 2 million views since it was first posted. Many TikTok users condemned the man’s behavior and expressed support for @celenana_na and her group.
“A grown man feeling threatened by a bunch of cute girls dancing. How embarrassing for him,” one user wrote.
Some believe the man should be charged with assault. Others say the incident was not surprising since it occurred in Downtown Crossing, a “diverse” but still “racist” area.
Other comments targeted the man’s race, which @celenana_na addressed in her follow-up video. “His race has nothing to do with this clip. It’s literally just about how we got singled out just because we were wearing masks, just because of ‘communism.’ There were a bunch of other people around us wearing masks too, but for some reason, he approached us about wearing masks and ‘communism,’” she said.
@celenana_na also discouraged people from pursuing the man: “This was just a small incident. I don’t think it’s worth finding him and making him lose anything,” she noted.
Featured Image via @celenana_na
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