Lee Wong is an Asian-American Army veteran who currently serves as a lawmaker in West Chester Township, Ohio. With the alarming rise of violence against Asian Americans, Wong delivered a powerful speech during a town hall meeting last week.
Wong said he used to get weird looks, and people questioned if he was truly American. He also shared that while in Chicago in the 1970s, someone beat him up for being Asian.
"We went to court, and he never got punished, so that changed the course of my career," Wong explained to his colleagues. "I went to the U.S. Army and served 20 years in active duty. For too long, I have put up with a lot of s- in silence, excuse me the language. Too afraid to speak out, fearing more abuse and discrimination."
During remarks, Wong, a moderate Republican, displayed the wounds he has from fighting for this country.
"I'm 69 years old, and I'm going to show you...what patriotism looks like," he said as he started unbuttoning his shirt. "This was sustained from my service in the U.S. military."
"Now, is this patriot enough?" he asked as he lifted his shirt to reveal the scars on his stomach.
Wong says "he's not ashamed to walk around anymore" because he's just as American as the next person.
Lee Wong, an elected official in West Chester, Ohio & @USArmy veteran with 20-years of service, took his shirt off during a town hall meeting on Wednesday and revealed scars he received during his service. “Is this patriot enough?” he asked #StopAsianHate https://t.co/3nCwTlVGxD pic.twitter.com/0R1TX3MTtp— James LaPorta (@JimLaPorta) March 26, 2021
His speech has now gone viral, reaching nearly 5 million views.
While the media may be misleading on the motives, reports show that violence against Asian-Americans is up. Last week, a 21-year-old white man killed six Asian women and two others in an Atlanta massage parlor. The motive was unclear, but the media suggested that "white supremacists" were wreaking carnage all over the country. More instances of violence against Asian-Americans have been reported since. President Biden recently announced that he wants to establish a Justice Department initiative to address a rising number of hate crimes against the community.
One thing we can all agree on, however, is that Wong is a patriotic hero.