Combating All Forms of Racism, Bigotry, and Hate
New York’s greatest strength is its diversity. However, there are some who see diversity as a threat and are acting on it. Hate crimes have been on the rise the past few years and our top law enforcement officials have warned that white supremacists are the greatest domestic violent extremist threat our country faces today.
Instead of doing something about this growing threat, Republicans are fighting a culture war to whitewash our country’s history. By not effectively teaching our children about racism, implicit bias, and our shared history—the good and the bad—we help extremist groups control the narrative.
We must do more to combat all forms of hate and violence. Congress must act to ensure the FBI, Department of Justice, and Department of Homeland Security are taking the appropriate steps to investigate threats, protect vulnerable populations, and hold individuals and groups accountable. More funds must be appropriated to help local law enforcement and community-based organizations combat hatred and protect communities. The federal penalty for committing a hate crime must be increased.
Congress must conduct oversight of federal law enforcement agencies to ensure they are taking these threats seriously. The White House’s National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism clearly identified the threat white supremacists pose to communities and our nation. Yet a year later, in the “Report to the Secretary of Homeland Security Domestic Violent Extremism Internal Review: Observations, Findings, and Recommendations,” white supremacy was not mentioned once. It is important that we identify the threats we face today and work to address them accordingly.