September 30, 2022
Biden calls on Americans to speak out against hate-mongering violence

WASHINGTON (AP) — A grocery store in Buffalo. A nightclub in Orlando. A Walmart in El Paso: All the sites of hate-mongering violence against Black, Hispanic or LGBTQ Americans in the past five years. And all the sad symbols of hatred “through the line” that must be rooted out, President Joe Biden said Thursday.

The administration gathered teachers, faith leaders and others who experienced violence for the first time to discuss how to stop the violence and promised action.

In 2020, hate crimes in the US were the highest in more than a decade, and The Justice Department has pledged to step up efforts to combat it. Now, the political violence filled with lies about the 2020 election is overlapping with hate crimes: A growing number of ardent Donald Trump supporters seem ready to strike back against the FBI or others they believe. That they are going too far in investigating the former president.

Biden spoke of a hate “through-line” that has long plagued the country, along with racism, bigotry and violence. Hate never goes away, he said, it only hides. And it’s up to everyday Americans to stop airing it and stamp it out.

“All hatred inspired by violence has no place in America,” he said.

The president’s gloomy, reflective tone on America’s long history of hate crime was the exact opposite of his shrill voice A few weeks ago, when he rebuked pro-Trump Republicans for spreading lies about the 2020 election, that had taken root and fueled violence.

On Thursday, Biden briefly mentioned January 6, 2021 Uprising at the US Capitol As a moment that did not reflect “who we are” as a nation. And he said that lately a lot of oxygen has been given to hate in politics, the media and the internet.

“Violence and haters are in the minority. …until we talk, this will continue,” he said.

Biden pointed to new federal efforts to help schools, local law enforcement agencies and cultural institutions prevent and respond to such violence. He also called on Congress to impose stronger transparency requirements on social media companies whose platforms allow anonymous hate to spread hate.

Among those in attendance on Thursday was Susan Broe, whose daughter Heather Heyer was murdered in 2017 at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Introducing Biden, Broe explained how losing his daughter was part of a bigger story.

“Her murder resonated around the world. But the hatred neither began nor ended here,” the brother said. “While my daughter’s death received so much national and international attention, often these hateful attacks against people of color were carried out with unacceptably little public attention. go.”

Other attendees included Sarah Collins Rudolph, who killed her sister and three other black girls in a Ku Klux Klan bombing of a Birmingham, Alabama, church 59 years ago, who lost an eye and was still left with her body. There are pieces of glass inside. and the family of Balbir Singh Sodhi, a Sikh man from Arizona who was killed in a hate crime four days after the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001.

Law enforcement officials across the country are warning of an increase in threats and the potential for violent attacks on federal agents or buildings in the wake of the FBI’s search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home.

“We must stand together and we must state very clearly that a loss against any one of us is a loss for all of us,” Vice President Kamala Harris said in her inaugural address on Thursday. “We are at a turning point in our history, and indeed, our democracy. Years from now, our children and our grandchildren, they are going to ask us, ‘What did you do in that moment?'”

Brandon Wolf, an LGBTQ activist, recounts his experience from a lecture at the “United We Stand Summit” inside Pulse nightclub in Florida in 2016 when a shooter opened fire. He was in the bathroom when the shooting started.

“I remember the panic, a sprint to the emergency exit,” he said. “I remember as I prepared to put myself one foot in front of the other, eyes closed on a swirl of light from a door that had left ajar.”

Wolf survived, but the shooter killed 49 people, mostly LGBTQ and people of color. He told the crowd that he already knew how important it was to combat hatred.

Civil rights groups in attendance said the summit was not mere sham, and that they were planning a course of action.

“Today was not just talk and reflection, but commitment to action by the government,” said Mark Moriel of the National Urban League.

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