In March of 2020 Tony Holten was brutally arrested and died about one and a half hours later. Yesterday – more than a year after his death – I read in an essay by Max de Blank in One World that Tony was an adoptee. Apart from this essay I found an article in de Volkskrant that describes the reconstruction of that day, and the mentioning of his adoption regarding Tony’s recent findings about his falsified birth certificate and what impact this had on his mental state.
This reminded me of the recent killing of Christian Hall by the police in the United States, also an adoptee. Just like in the case of Tony, not every article mentions that he was adopted. However, in both cases their mental state was described. The term that police in the Netherlands uses is: a person with disturbed behaviour.
And their mental state ended up in them being killed by police.
Adoptees and mental health issues are nothing new. In fact, adoptees are four times more likely to attempt suicide than non- adoptees according to a 2013 report – probably more, cause it’s simply not registered. This is why so many of us advocate for either reform or the abolishment of the Adoption Industry, or the Child Welfare Industrial Complex as a whole.
We’ve lost too many of us, and no one knows. We’re silenced: mostly by our own adoptive parents, but also other adoptees, and society still lives with the idea that adoption is beautiful. The Empress Han says so sharply in her conversation with Miss Enxi: We are a marginalized group within a marginalized group, referring to not only being adopted, but also a transracial adoptee – meaning BIPOC.
Sometimes not feeling like belonging to, or even being accepted by the Asian community.
In The Netherlands more than half of the people that died under police’ responsibility are “people with confused behaviour” according to Control Alt Delete, an organization dedicated to end racial profiling.
If adoptive parents really adopted for the child and not for themselves, I know things would have looked greatly different today. The recent halt on intercountry adoption stated by the Dutch government gives hope for systemic change. Although I’m aware that it starts with education and awareness.
I shortly mention the killing in Atlanta of six Asian women, which was racial femicide. This topic needs a whole other post, and I’m glad that in the Dutch news a few articles are popping up about Asian Fetishization and the Anti-Asian violence.
The reason that I mentioned this, was that being a whyte murderer, the likelihood that you’re going to get killed by the police is nihil (you can even receive praise), being ascribed to having ‘a bad day’ to be exempted from any guilt.
*Reminder: this post is part of a video I shared on Instagram. I don’t always write an additional post to every video, so for more content please follow me there.