Racial slur against San Francisco tech entrepreneur spurs Twitter outrage

A San Francisco tech entrepreneur says his garage was defaced with a racial slur against Asians this weekend, spurring outrage on Twitter after he shared images of the vandal online.

Justin Kan, a partner at the start-up seed-funding group Y Combinator, shared a photo and security camera video on Twitter on Saturday morning, showing an unknown person in a hoodie and hat vandalizing his garage with a phrase directed against Asians.

Kan, who is of Chinese descent, said he believes that his home was specifically targeted because he, his fiancee and his brothers are among the few Asian Americans on their street in Dubose Triangle in San Francisco.

He said he reported the incident to police but has no idea who the culprit could be.


“It’s really jarring and shocking,” he said. “We kind of racked our brains to figure out, have we seen this person before, have we done anything to [anger the person]?”

Twitter users reacted with shock and an outpouring of support for Kan, many condemning the behavior as unrepresentative of the city, a liberal metropolis and tech hub where about one of three residents is of Asian descent.

A neighbor painted over the slur, saying that he hated looking at it, Kan said.

Besides his work at Y Combinator, Kan is known for founding the online platform Twitch, which is used to broadcast video games and was acquired by Amazon last year.

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