Skip to Content

Rochester man, born in China, reacts to President’s language about COVID-19

Remaining Ad Time Ad - 00:00

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- The first COVID-19 was first discovered in Wuhan, China more than three months ago. Since then, there have been 81,250 cases in China and 3,253 deaths.

The virus that was first discovered there now has spread globally. With every state in the United States reporting at least one case.

President Donald Trump now is calling COVID-19 the “Chinese Virus.”

Rochester resident Simon Yu.

"It worries me when our heritage is associated with a deadly virus," said Simon Yu, a Rochester resident who was born in China.

Yu moved to Rochester 20 years ago from Iowa and decided to settle there and raise his family. He wants to remind people that words used truly matter.

When KTTC asked him what he thought when he heard President Trump call COVID-19 the “Chinese Virus,” he shared his frustrations.

In a press conference, a reporter asked the president if he thought calling COVID-19 the “Chinese Virus” was racist.

"It's not racist at all, not at all. It comes from China that's why. It’s from China," Trump stated.

"Millions of people in Wuhan still fighting for their lives can you imagine what they think when they hear this," Yu added.

On the other hand, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said in a tweet, "As our Asian American community faces heightened discrimination due to COVID-19, my message is clear: Viruses don’t discriminate and neither should we."

For Yu this outbreak has been about the little things that make him appreciate those in his life. "Since the start of the outbreak in China, my boss has regularly checked on me and on my family situation back in China."

He also understands that situations are worse for some people he considers himself very lucky.

"Chinese-Americans are so worried they are arming themselves in case something bad happens,” he said. “I don't have that feeling here. I feel safe."

Ubah Ali

Ubah Ali

Skip to content