“We can’t let fear keep us from seeing our families, enjoying our neighborhoods, feeling part of the community," Andrew Yang said Tuesday in Brooklyn Heights. 

Yang, the frontrunner in the race for mayor, has been forced to meet the moment amid unrelenting violence against those who look like him.

What You Need To Know

  • Yang said Tuesday the 65-year-old kicked in Hell's Kitchen could have been his mother
  • Candidate has spoken to feeling like an outsideras a young Asian-American

  • If elected, Yang would be first Asian American mayor of NYC

“What I’d say to Asian-Americans who have this sense of fear, I understand," he added. "It’d be impossible not to feel this way. But we can’t let fear win.”
Yang, also the son of Taiwanese immigrants, finds himself with a pulpit to condemn and comfort.

Time and time again, he's had to address the bias and hatred affecting his community, because time and time again, the attacks keep coming.

The recent beating of an 65-year-old woman happened near his Manhattan apartment.
“I can see my mother in that situation," he said. "Literally, my mother walks that street in Hell’s Kitchen.”
The toll is heavy.

And it’s personal.

After eight people were killed earlier this month in the Atlanta area, including six women of Asian descent, he spoke with emotion at the National Action Network headquarters.
“I’ve been Asian all my life and I remember vividly growing up with this constant sense of invisibility, mockery, disdain, a sense that you cannot be American if you have an Asian face," he said then.
Yang has also appeared on national TV with his wife Evelyn, who spoke about the experience of Asian-American women.

Just weeks ago, Yang had urged a change in course at an AAPI rally after the Atlanta murders.
“Are we going to make these women’s lives and passings mean something? Are we going to make them mean something, New York City?” he asked the crowd.
On Tuesday, in the wake of still more brutality, he called for the NYPD’s Asian Hate Crime Task Force to be fully funded and asked that his fellow New Yorkers not just stand by — as some did in the Hell’s Kitchen and J train attacks.
“In New York, we’re much better than this. I mean, if you see something, you should do something to help," he said.

If elected, Yang would be the first Asian-American mayor in New York City history.

Previously, the highest-ranking elected city official of Asian descent was John Liu, who served as city comptroller and now is a state senator.