CONGRESSIONAL BLACK CAUCUS; Congressional Record Vol. 163, No. 99
(House of Representatives - June 12, 2017)

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[Pages H4838-H4845]
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                       CONGRESSIONAL BLACK CAUCUS

  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Mast). Under the Speaker's announced 
policy of January 3, 2017, the gentlewoman from the Virgin Islands (Ms. 
Plaskett) is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority 
leader.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, it is with great honor that I rise today 
to coanchor this CBC Special Order hour.
  I would like to acknowledge the great work and the leadership of our 
chair, Cedric Richmond of Louisiana, and, of course, my coanchor, Marc 
Veasey of Texas, as we lead the discussion for the next 60 minutes.
  In these next 60 minutes, we have a chance to speak directly to the 
American people on issues of great importance to the Congressional 
Black Caucus, Congress, and the constituents that we represent.
  In this hour, we would like to discuss racism and discrimination in 
America and, specifically, hate crimes and the radicalization and the 
domestic terrorism that they present to the American people.
  The conclusion of Dylann Roof's trial a few month's ago is the latest 
reminder that homegrown terrorism has become part of the fabric of life 
in America. This problem shows no signs of fading yet reveals a threat 
that is both rare and more complex than simple explanation suggests.
  Solving the issue of domestic terrorism through hate crimes involves 
understanding the true nature of the problem--violent domestic 
extremism--so that effective steps can be taken to protect the Nation 
from it.
  It is legitimate to ask whether homegrown terrorists are being 
radicalized. We talk about jihadi narratives and Islamic extremism, the 
Islamic State group recruiting online; but there are other groups in 
this Nation which are radicalizing our youth, radicalizing young people 
to be a threat against other Americans. This is a subject and a 
discussion that has rarely been discussed and which we believe is very 
important.
  Since 2001, almost 40 percent of the nearly 150 terrorism fatalities 
in the United States were related to domestic motivations, not jihadi 
narratives. It is my hope that in the discussion we will have this hour 
we are able to discuss in depth the effect that these hate crimes and 
this domestic violence has on the United States.
  Mr. Speaker, I include in the Record a letter that was written June 
7, 2017, by the Congressional Black Caucus to the Honorable Jeff 
Sessions, Attorney General; Andrew McCabe, Acting Director of the FBI; 
and John Kelly, Secretary of Homeland Security, in which we express our 
concern over the alarming number of hate crimes reported across the 
country, particularly in the wake of the election of President Donald 
J. Trump.

                                                     Congressional


                                                 Black Caucus,

                                     Washington, DC, June 7, 2017.
     Hon. Jeff Sessions,
     Attorney General, Department of Justice, Washington, DC.
     Andrew McCabe,
     Acting Director, Federal Bureau of Investigations, 
         Washington, DC.
     Hon. John Kelly,
     Secretary of Homeland Security, Department of Homeland 
         Security, Washington, DC.
       Dear Attorney General Sessions and Acting Director McCabe: 
     I write today to express my concern over the alarming number 
     of hate crimes reported across the country, particularly in 
     the wake of the election of President Donald J. Trump. In 
     addition to speaking out against this rising tide of hate, 
     violence, and intolerance, it is critical that your agencies 
     proactively investigate each and every incident of a 
     potential hate crime and aggressively prosecute these cases 
     to the fullest extent of the law.
       During the presidential campaign, then-candidate Donald 
     Trump employed starkly divisive rhetoric to connect with a 
     segment of his base that relished in cultural grievance and 
     hatred. His tone and the arguments that he made were 
     incredibly offensive to minority communities, and his 
     campaign rallies were forums for some of the ugliest public 
     displays of race-based violence and animus in modern 
     political times. Numerous Black Americans were assaulted at 
     his rallies and scenes of deep racial resentment against 
     Blacks, Hispanics, immigrants, and Muslims were frequently 
     paraded and celebrated.
       Since the election, it seems hate-filled individuals have 
     been emboldened to terrorize minority communities. In just 
     the first 34 days after the election, the Southern Poverty 
     Law Center counted a total of 1,094 bias incidents around the 
     nation. Disturbingly, the Center also calculated that 37 
     percent of these cases directly referenced either President-
     elect Trump, his campaign slogans, or his infamous remarks 
     about sexual assault. This data is just from the immediate 
     aftermath of the election. The numbers have increased since 
     then, with national news providing coverage. These are not 
     isolated incidents, but rather a frightening trend forming 
     before our eyes.
       In fact, this is occurring in Congress' own back yard, like 
     the horrific hate crime that took place just a few miles away 
     at the University of Maryland when Richard Collins III, a 
     promising young man, was stabbed to death on the eve of his 
     graduation from Bowie State University by an admitted white 
     supremacist. There have also been several reports of nooses 
     hung throughout the District of Columbia, including in the 
     African American Museum of History and Culture and on 
     American University's campus. To add insult to injury, a 
     Mississippi lawmaker recently called for Louisiana 
     politicians to be ``lynched'' for supporting the removal of 
     racist confederate monuments from New Orleans.
       Surely there is no greater cause of a government than to 
     protect the lives of its citizens, particularly those 
     uniquely vulnerable to hate, intolerance, and violence. The 
     federal hate crimes statutes were designed with that mission 
     in mind and serve as a critically important tool in 
     combatting the most insidious elements of our society. That 
     is why I implore you to dedicate additional resources within 
     your respective agencies to address the increasing frequency 
     of these deplorable acts. you should and must investigate 
     each and every potential hate crime and prosecute offenders 
     to the fullest extent allowed under the law. You should also 
     ensure that community leaders, including state and local law 
     enforcement, understand the federal resources available to 
     investigate and prosecute hate crimes.
       Your leadership is required to not only bring justice to 
     the victims of hate crimes, but also to send a clear message 
     that these acts of domestic terrorism will never be tolerated 
     in this country.
           Sincerely,
                                                  Cedric Richmond,
                                Chair, Congressional Black Caucus.

  Ms. PLASKETT. In addition to speaking out against the rising tide of 
hate, violence, and intolerance in this country, it is critical that 
those agencies--the FBI, the Department of Justice, as well as Homeland 
Security--speak out and proactively investigate each and every incident 
of potential hate crime and aggressively prosecute these cases to the 
fullest extent of the law.
  Since the election, it seems that hate-filled individuals have been 
emboldened to terrorize minority communities. In just the first 34 days 
after the election, the Southern Poverty Law Center counted a total of 
1,094 bias incidents around the Nation. Disturbingly, the center also 
calculated that 37 percent of these cases directly referenced either 
President-elect Trump at the time, his campaign slogans, or infamous 
remarks about sexual assault. This data is just from the immediate 
aftermath of the election. The numbers have increased since then.
  It is the responsibility of this Congress as well as those agencies 
to stem this flow of violence that is occurring in this Nation. We know 
that our President would not tolerate these sorts of matters, and we 
are hopeful that he, the Justice Department, the FBI, and Homeland 
Security will do whatever is necessary to protect American lives from 
hate crimes that are occurring, domestic terrorism, and the 
radicalization of our young people to exert hate against other 
Americans.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Veasey), my 
coanchor, to speak on this issue. Then we will have an opportunity to 
hear from other members of the Congressional Black Caucus about this.
  Mr. VEASEY. Mr. Speaker, I thank Ms. Plaskett for starting off this 
Special Order hour on racism and discrimination in the age of Trump.

[[Page H4839]]

  I really think that this is important and timely that we talk about 
this because, as you mentioned, these incidents are on the rise and we 
need to start to discuss them. We need to have open and honest, frank 
discussions about them, to be quite forward, because, if we don't, then 
we are never going to be able to move past this or be able to have a 
better America in regards to racism, hate, and discrimination if we 
don't begin to have that open dialogue.
  Not only does the country need to have an open dialogue, but I think 
that, as Members of Congress, we need to be the leaders in this area, 
and we should be the ones who are kicking off the dialogue and starting 
this.
  Make no mistake about it, I know a lot of people will tell you that 
racism is dead, that discrimination is a thing of the past, that it was 
something that happened to people that are baby boomers and older and 
that the effects of discrimination are no longer with us, but we know 
that is not true.
  We know that, again, as Ms. Plaskett just mentioned a second ago, 
since 2016, there has been a disturbing number of incidents that have 
occurred, a disturbing number of things that have been said, things 
that have been tweeted, the rise of the alt-right, and so many other 
things that we should be concerned about.
  The Southern Poverty Law Center supports this very claim. This 
organization has collected over 1,300 reported bias incidents between 
the day after the election and February 7.
  Let me point out, because I know that, sadly, there are some people 
that will cast doubt towards the Southern Poverty Law Center, but the 
Southern Poverty Law Center has done a tremendous job over the last 
couple of decades or so of not only helping identify people that commit 
acts, but groups like the KKK, neo-Nazi groups, and others.
  Quite frankly, I don't know why anyone would want to try to undermine 
or put down an organization that wants to put down groups like that, 
like the KKK, skinheads, and Nazis. It makes no sense. I hate when I 
hear people say bad things about the Southern Poverty Law Center 
because of the time, money, and effort that they put into fighting 
groups like I just mentioned.
  Let me be clear, because oftentimes when we talk about race, it turns 
into a very divisive topic, and we don't need for this to be a divisive 
topic. We need to sit down, come together, and talk because we need to 
create an opportunity here in America where we can change people's 
attitudes and make sure that our Nation's history is not repeated.

                              {time}  1930

  I also think that, as parents, we have to openly talk about race, 
bigotry, and hate with our children. One of the things that disturbs me 
as a parent and, quite frankly, just as a proud American is I will hear 
people say: Well, I don't say racist things in my house, so my kids 
would never hear that. If kids are saying racist things, then it must 
be because they are hearing it at home.
  But I have to tell you, as a parent of an 11-year-old, I know that 
there are influences outside of my home. I know that there is a lot of 
peer pressure on kids. I know there are a lot of things on social 
media, and kids want to fit in. Kids want to be cool. So you can never 
utter one bad thing about a different nationality or race or someone of 
a different sexual orientation than yours in your house, and your kid 
could still end up being caught up in something bad like bigotry or 
racism just because of inappropriate influences at school.
  That is why it is important, in my opinion, that, as parents, we talk 
about this with our children, as uncomfortable as it may make us, but 
we need to have the discussion. We need to know and our children need 
to know that it is important to us that we recognize other people's 
culture; that we recognize other people's faith and sexual orientation 
and religion so that, as they are forming and they are growing, they 
understand that this is a nation that is a great nation that is open to 
everybody, regardless of race, ethnic, or gender background.
  I know that for some people, having to talk about racism, it can be 
very uncomfortable because it makes people guilty. A lot of times when 
it comes up or you are talking about this, you just--you hear people 
trying to come up with different examples to sort of assuage any sort 
of guilt that they may have. It makes them very uncomfortable.
  But, again, we have to tackle this head-on. We have to come together 
to confront these issues of social injustice because it really is time 
that our Nation heals. It is time that our Nation heals and it is time 
that we break the chains of our plagued history.
  I know that we have other Members here on the House floor that want 
to talk, and I have some things that I am going to mention a little bit 
later, just some of the unfortunate incidents that have happened with 
the President, with the Commander in Chief, the history that he has 
with racism that I would, quite frankly, like to see him address. 
Whether it is HUD discrimination, Central Park joggers, after they were 
exonerated by DNA, I think that his comments were: ``Well, they still 
did something bad,'' so on and so on. Just some of the issues at the 
casino that he owned in New Jersey, we need to talk about those.
  Quite frankly, he can be a leader--he can actually be a leader in 
discussing these incidents that happened under his control and under 
his command, whether it was at his private corporation or whether it 
was commenting on the Central Park joggers, about how it was a learning 
experience for him, how he is never going to let it happen again, and 
how he is never going to let those words utter out of his mouth.
  But before I go into that, I am going to turn it back over to the 
Representative Plaskett from the Virgin Islands. I, again, thank her 
very much for kicking this off.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Congressman Veasey, I think it is important, one of the 
things you talked about is what is going on in our homes and the fact 
that our children can be radicalized outside of the home. This is an 
opportunity for us as Americans to see the victimization even of those 
children who become a part of the alt-right, who become a part of neo-
Nazi groups; that they are, in fact, being radicalized by these very 
disturbing groups, and that we, as leaders in America, have a 
responsibility.
  That is why I am asking unanimous consent to have the letter that was 
written by Chairman Cedric Richmond put into the Record--the letter of 
June 7 that went to the FBI, to Homeland Security, as well as to the 
Justice Department to ask them to investigate and take proactive 
stances; not just to protect those individuals who are victimized when 
violence occurs, but to protect those young people and others who may 
be untowardly influenced by social media to become part of these 
groups.
  I think that is a great point that you bring up, as well as our 
President becoming someone who can lead the charge against this. We see 
the rise of this activity during his campaign and after his election. 
Well, then our President needs to be the one to be Presidential and to 
stem this influence and this rise of hate crimes that are taking place.
  Mr. Speaker, at this time I am asking that our colleague, Donald 
Payne, from the great State of New Jersey, who has done an amazing 
amount of work in his own community in the area of Newark in trying to 
stem violence and criminal justice, the reform work that he is doing, 
to speak on this matter this evening. I thank him so much for the time 
that he is giving us. I yield to the gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. 
Payne).
  Mr. PAYNE. Well, first, I thank the gentlewoman from the Virgin 
Islands, Congresswoman Plaskett, and the gentleman from Texas, Marc 
Veasey, for hosting tonight's Special Order hour on such an important 
topic: racism and discrimination.
  Before I begin, I want to take a moment to mark the 1-year 
anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub shooting and to remember the 49 
lives that were cut short in the deadliest mass shooting in our 
Nation's history.
  As we grieve for the victims and their families, we must continue to 
stand in solidarity with the survivors and with the LGBTQ community 
against hate, intolerance, for love, in support of our Nation's values 
of equality and dignity for all.

[[Page H4840]]

  The kind of intolerance, hate, and violence on display that day in 
Orlando has become an alarming trend in this country, a trend that has 
disturbingly been fueled by President Trump. According to the Southern 
Poverty Law Center, 37 percent of the 1,094 bias-related incidents in 
just the first month after the election referenced the President, his 
campaign slogans, or his remarks about sexual assault.

  As he did throughout his campaign, President Trump continues to speak 
the language of racial and cultural grievance, pitting Americans 
against one another and perpetuating the viciousness he pretends to 
despise. The result is what you would expect: a spike in hate crimes 
and hate speech.
  I have seen in my district in New Jersey where anti-Semitic graffiti 
was plastered on a pedestrian bridge. We have seen it at American 
University and just down the road at the National Museum of African 
American History and Culture, where nooses were found last month. 
Communities of color know this pain all too well.
  Mr. Speaker, I am really fortunate to be able to discuss an issue of 
such importance to this Nation. This is one nation, under God, 
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
  You know, I have been very fortunate in my life to have been born 
into a situation where a great American prior to me held this seat for 
23 years in the 10th Congressional District of the State of New Jersey. 
His name was Donald Payne. He was my father and he afforded me a 
lifestyle, one of which I did not know of his suffering and pain 
growing up as a young African American in this country. But even in 
that situation, I have found myself--irrespective of being in that 
position, I found myself in situations that have been dangerous and 
uncomfortable.
  As a young, 20-year-old--you know, when we are 20, we do things that 
we probably shouldn't be doing at times. I was on my lunchtime going 
downtown to pay a bill at a department store where I had my first 
credit card, and I was running late. So what I decided to do was make a 
U-turn on the main street, Broad Street, in Newark, New Jersey, which 
is the largest street in the town. And I made a U-turn to come in front 
of the store.
  Naturally, you know, with my luck, a motorcycle police officer was 
coming down the street at the same time. So he pulled me over, as he 
should, and I was wrong. But I was using my cousin's car. So when he 
asked me for my license and registration, I could not find the papers 
that I needed and I was fumbling and nervous.
  The officer leaned into the car and used the N-word and said: If you 
don't find those documents in a minute, I will throw you so far under 
the jail that they will never find you.
  So this is very frightening for any citizen to go through. So I was 
able to get my license, and I handed it to him. Just before that, they 
would throw me so far under the jail that they would never find me 
again. Once I handed him my license and it said that I was Donald 
Payne, Jr., whose father was a sitting councilman in the city of 
Newark, his whole attitude changed.
  ``Don't you know that you could get hurt, or you could hurt someone, 
or you have to be careful.'' A minute ago I was nothing. I would be so 
far under the jail, they would never find me. But now that I am 
connected to something or someone, all of a sudden we have become 
paternal.
  Mr. Speaker, there are millions of people in this country that aren't 
connected to someone, and these are the types of things that they go 
through. So I am just here to say that we must be vigilant. I believe 
in this country; I believe in its greatness. I believe in the words in 
the Pledge of Allegiance. I believe in the Constitution. We must make 
it work for all Americans.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Thank you so much, Mr. Payne, for your words, your 
enlightenment, and for sharing that very personal piece of you and your 
own experience. There are so many African Americans and so many people 
of color in this country who have those exact same experiences.
  Whether it is us, personally--I know I have mine exactly like that. 
You know, I have four sons, and each one of them have had that kind of 
experience here in this country.
  With the rise of hate that is occurring, we have to be careful for 
every American and we need to be concerned that this country is no 
longer becoming a safe place for groups of individuals; that there are 
people that are rising up and attempting to terrorize other Americans. 
This should be of concern to Congress. This should be of concern to our 
President.
  I thank Mr. Payne again for that.
  Mr. Speaker, at this time I yield to Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee 
from Texas, who sits not only on the Budget Committee, but, very 
relevant to our discussion this evening, is one of the senior members 
of the Judiciary Committee, as well as Homeland Security Subcommittee, 
where so many of these issues form a confluence.
  Thank you so much for being with us this evening, Congresswoman 
Jackson Lee. We look forward to your remarks and to the enlightenment 
that you will be giving us here in this Chamber as well as the American 
people.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. Jackson Lee).
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. Well, first of all, it is my honor and privilege to 
thank Congresswoman Plaskett for her ongoing leadership in speaking to 
our colleagues and the American people. Let me take a moment of 
personal privilege to say to her that, over the weekend in Texas, I was 
with a number of individuals from the Virgin Islands, and it certainly 
was my first task to tell them of the excellent representation that 
they were getting by her leadership on so many issues.
  But to you, I want to say that we were at the commissioning of the 
USS Gabrielle Giffords, and proudly so. The commander of that ship is 
from the Virgin Islands, so there was a contingent of individuals from 
all over the country for recognizing the commander and his wife. Let me 
say that I made sure that those sailors knew who was supporting them as 
well. It certainly was a great honor to former Congresswoman Giffords, 
and there wasn't a dry eye as we did that. So I just wanted to add that 
and thank you for your indulgence of that.
  If I might, let me also acknowledge my colleague on the floor, 
Congresswoman Val Demings, and Floridians who are here, just to make 
note of the commemoration of the tragedy at the Pulse Nightclub.

                              {time}  1945

  This is the area in which the Congresswoman policed, if you will, and 
her spouse still there leads the community in law enforcement. I will 
honor to those who lost their lives, but to the recognition that 
terrorism and hateful acts are not to be accepted by any of us.
  As a good friend of mine, a Muslim, said yesterday as we stood 
against hateful acts against Muslims around the world, and particularly 
around the United States, he said that the way that we deal with this 
danger is to love in recognition of the human dignity of all.
  To the LGBTQ community, my deepest sympathy and recognition in this 
month that we honor and have Pride Month that we recognize your deep 
involvement in this country and your right to human dignity. So I thank 
Congresswoman Plaskett for allowing me to engage in that statement.
  Let me say that I would hope that none of us would have wanted to be 
on the floor tonight to talk about the changing face of America since 
the election of the President of the United States but, in fact, to 
recognize that there has been a surge in discrimination throughout this 
Nation.
  The roots of racial extremist violence against peaceful Black 
communities runs deep in American history: from this country's dark 
path of chattel slavery; to the southern lynch mobs that sought to 
permanently disenfranchise the Black vote; to the church bombing that 
killed four little Black girls in Birmingham; to the dismantling of an 
entire economic district in Tulsa; and to the senseless stabbing, just 
a few weeks ago, of a bright, young man by the name of Richard Collins 
III.
  I am sad that the election of President Trump--and I am not sure 
whether this has been brought to his attention. I would like to bring 
it to his attention--has created a divisive atmosphere. Trump's 
political debut was centered on the racist birther movement, which 
questioned the citizenship of then-President Obama.

[[Page H4841]]

  He was not in office then. And to some, it was a little humorous; 
some were shocked. Certainly, the Black community did not take it 
humorously. This was a Senator who had been duly elected by the 
citizens of Illinois. He had done nothing to bring in commentary on 
himself personally. He sought the Presidency of the United States. He 
offered to the American people all of the documentation that would be 
required, yet Donald Trump persisted for 5 years in insisting, through 
fake news, that he was not a citizen of the United States of America.
  During his political campaign, he repeatedly refused to reject the 
endorsement of White supremacist groups. He failed to condemn 
supporters who shouted out racist slurs, and, on occasion, violently 
attacked protestors who happened to be an African-American woman, in 
particular.
  In a nation completely comprised of immigrants, he has built a 
hateful movement around building a wall. And to my friends who are 
Hispanic, particularly Mexicans, he called them drug dealers and any 
number of names.
  This country has prided itself on the value of immigration, of 
diversity, and, certainly, freed slaves who have come to make this 
country the great country that it is. Overall, his anti-immigrant 
incidents were the most reported, 315 incidents; followed by anti-
Black, 221; anti-Muslim, 112; and anti-LGBT, 109.
  So I just want to take a moment to add to my commentary, the things 
that I think are grossly horrific; that we should realize that this is 
not a time for the CBC to be on the floor casting blame.
  Let me also, as I acknowledge Congresswoman Plaskett, thank our 
chairperson, Congressman Cedric Richmond, for his really unceasing 
leadership of the Congressional Black Caucus and the work that he has 
done to make sure that we astutely have the information to be the 
conscience of Congress.
  These are the pictures of hatred. This is the individual who killed 
the young man that--I don't want to show the wrong picture--but this is 
a picture of an individual who was engaged in the killing of two 
individuals, I believe in Portland, Oregon, because they were trying to 
defend someone of a different background.
  We have a noose found hanging near a school in Washington, D.C. This 
is a picture of that. This has all happened since the election of 
President Trump.
  We have an incident, June 9, 2017, The Washington Post says, `` `Shut 
up, Slave!': A spilled Starbucks drink led to a racist tirade and 
sidewalk fight. . . .''
  I don't know if people are under extreme tension, but this is all 
happening in 2017.
  We have another one: A day without racism? Not for Trump's 
administration. The Department of Justice is dismantling, or lowering 
the Civil Rights Division, cutting the staffing that is there.
  Hate crimes in the U.S. rising. These are the kinds of things. And 
tragically, here is a handsome, beautiful, young man who was taking his 
commission and getting ready to graduate, Richard Collins III, and he 
was killed.
  Let me finish on these points about the criminal justice system that 
I think is very important.
  Black Americans are more likely to have their cars searched.
  Black Americans are more likely to be arrested for drug use.
  Black Americans are more likely to be jailed while awaiting trial.
  Black Americans are more likely to be offered a plea deal that 
includes prison time.
  Black Americans are more likely to serve longer sentences than White 
Americans for the same offense.
  Black Americans are more likely to be disenfranchised.
  We also know that we have statistics, that I will offer into the 
Record, of Black American youth who are more likely to be included in 
the juvenile detention center, police stops, police searches, use of 
force during arrest, juvenile arrests, transgender arrests. Sixty 
percent of the transgender arrests are Black or Latino; arrests for 
marijuana.
  Most Blacks are not likely to get pretrial release. More Blacks are 
likely to be prosecuted. More Blacks are likely to get prison versus 
community service. Length of incarceration is longer than Whites.

  State judge incarceration, there are 208,000 people in State prison 
for drug offenses; 32 percent are White, 68 percent are Black.
  Federal drug convictions are higher among African Americans. Forty-
seven percent were Hispanics, and we are higher than those.
  Federal court sentencing, and, of course, incarceration of women 
African Americans are higher. Sentencing to life without parole, 
African Americans are higher, 65 percent.
  Hiring people with criminal records, that makes it very difficult for 
us to work, and eliminating the right to vote.
  So, Congresswoman, I will close by simply saying, where is the 
President on standing with the moral compass of asking the hatred to 
stop; to really empower a Department of Justice not to be led by an 
individual who has fought against voting rights, fought against the 
rights of those who are seeking to be rehabilitated in the criminal 
justice system; to join a bipartisan army of individuals against mass 
incarceration? Where is the President in standing against the hatred 
that has impacted the African-American community?
  The words that he has said, where is the President in stopping this 
onslaught that is generating into violence in the streets?
  Where is the moral compass of this administration? If it is not you, 
Mr. President, the Congressional Black Caucus will not take a back seat 
to you. We will fight and bring this country back to where it should 
be, and that is a country that believes in the equality of all 
Americans, and the African Americans who have died and bled in wars, 
and have been slaves, and, in essence, came through a reformation to be 
free. We will not take a back seat to all of this hatred.
  I ask you, Mr. President, where are your answers?
  Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleagues, Congressman Veasey and 
Congresswoman Plaskett for anchoring this important special order on 
``Racism and Discrimination in America.''
  For over 40 years the CBC has been at the forefront in the fight 
against the evils of racism, discrimination, marginalization, and the 
various manifestations of institutionalized racial bias.
  In today's uncertain times, we must be more steadfast than ever to 
continue that fight.
  No matter what your party identification is, I believe we can all 
agree that we must root out extremist violence everywhere, and 
especially within our borders.
  And while we are all committed to eliminating ISIS and all its 
sympathizers, we must not underestimate the threat of domestic 
terrorism and domestic violence by racial extremists.
  Throughout the history of this country, African-American communities 
have faced innumerable threats from those who don't comprehend that 
there is value within our nation's diversity.
  The roots of racial extremist violence against peaceful Black 
communities runs deep in American history: From this country's dark 
past of chattel slavery, to the southern lynch mobs that sought to 
permanently disenfranchise the Black vote, to the church bombing that 
killed four little girls in Birmingham, to the dismantling of an entire 
economic district in Tulsa, to the senseless stabbing of a bright young 
man by the name of Richard Collins III just a few weeks go.
  As a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, or the ``Conscience of 
the Congress'', I call on this body to do all it can to stem the rising 
tide of racial violence.
  Although progress has been made, President Trump's divisive rhetoric, 
and the actions of his followers, have shown us that we still have much 
work to do before all of America can feel safe.
  Consistent rhetoric of intolerance coming from Trump's campaign and 
now his administration has not only put a target on African-American 
communities, but also on Mexican-Americans, Muslim-Americans, women, 
and those within the immigrant population.
  The election of Donald Trump has had a significant effect on the 
nation's race relations:
  Trump's political debut was centered on the racist ``birther 
movement'', which questioned the citizenship of then President Obama 
for months.
  During his political campaign, he repeatedly refused to reject the 
endorsement of white supremacist groups.
  He failed to condemn supporters who shouted out racist slurs and on 
more than one occasion, violently attacked protesters.
  In a nation completely comprised of immigrants, he has built a 
hateful movement around building a wall to keep them out.

[[Page H4842]]

  This country has prided itself on being the melting pot of the world. 
The bastion of freedom of equality. Violence against any person based 
on their class, color, or creed is not only immoral, it's anti-
American.
  We must condemn, denounce, and seek to eliminate these acts of racial 
terror with the same fervor that we would when dealing with religious 
extremists.
  I have to quote former Attorney General Eric Holder who stated, 
``Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting 
pot, in things racial we have always been and continue to be, in too 
many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.''
  Regardless of who resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., this body, the 
people's chamber, has a responsibility to do all that it can to ensure 
the safety of all Americans. That is why I, along with my colleagues 
from the Congressional Black Caucus, have sent out a letter to the 
Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the acting 
director of the FBI urging them to allocate more time and resources to 
curbing the recent uptick in violence.
  Incidents of Racialized Violence Since the Election:
  The Southern Poverty Law Center has conducted a report on incidents 
of racialized violence following the Presidential election.
  There were over 1000 violent attacks reported within a month of the 
election.
  Overall, anti-immigrant incidents were the most reported at 315 
incidents, followed by anti-black (221 incidents), anti-Muslim (112 
incidents), and anti-LGBT (109 incidents).
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I thank the Congresswoman for her 
leadership on issues related to the Judiciary Committee and to others.
  At this time, I would like to invite the Congressman, not just from 
New York, but from, of course, what I believe is the best, most 
illustrious borough in New York City--Brooklyn, of course, which is 
where I was born and raised.
  Thank you so much, Congressman Jeffries, for your leadership on the 
Judiciary Committee, your discussions about the issues that we are 
discussing here this evening, and I am waiting to hear what you are 
going to not only present to us here in this Chamber but to the 
American people on this issue.
  I yield to the gentleman from New York (Mr. Jeffries).
  Mr. JEFFRIES. Mr. Speaker, I thank the distinguished gentlewoman from 
the Virgin Islands for yielding, and for the phenomenal job that you 
have done, along with my classmate, the distinguished gentleman from 
Texas, Representative Marc Veasey.
  As you know, I have great affection for the fact that you have a 
significant connection to Brooklyn. We say back home, there are two 
types of Americans: those who live in Brooklyn, and those who want to 
live in Brooklyn.
  But, certainly, this is a significant issue, that the Congressional 
Black Caucus has gathered here today to discuss during this hour of 
power, the opportunity for members of the Congressional Black Caucus to 
speak directly to the American people on an issue of great 
significance.
  Since January 20, we have seen a disturbing increase here in America 
in anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, anti-Black, anti-LGBT, and anti-Semitic 
acts.
  And the question is: Is this just a coincidence, or could it possibly 
have something to do with the election of the 45th President of the 
United States of America?
  Now, in part, what we are seeing is connected to a historic backlash 
that has often occurred throughout this journey that we have been on 
here in America, that whenever we make significant progress, there is 
always a backlash amongst some in America who have got a problem with 
the fact that we have done things designed to be more consistent with 
our values of liberty and justice for all, equal protection under the 
law.
  We know slavery was the original sin here in America. That was 
corrected in the aftermath of the North's victory during the Civil War. 
We had the reconstruction amendments: the 13th Amendment, abolish 
slavery; 14th Amendment, equal protection under the law; 15th 
Amendment, the right to vote regardless of race. That was progress in 
America followed by the inevitable backlash.
  The imposition of Jim Crow laws; a lynching epidemic; Black code, 
segregation, particularly through just the Deep South. Progress 
followed by backlash.
  And then finally, in the 1960s, in an effort to create a more perfect 
union and address the unfinished business in America, you had the civil 
rights movement, anchored with the `64 Civil Rights Act, effectively 
ended Jim Crow; the `65 Voting Rights Act, giving African Americans in 
the Deep South, people of color throughout the country the right to 
vote, unimpeded from things like grandfather clauses, and poll taxes, 
and other types of shenanigans that people were practicing; the 1968 
Fair Housing Act capped off the civil rights movement, followed by the 
inevitable backlash.
  Richard Nixon ran a racist campaign, a southern strategy, designed to 
appeal to aggrieved Whites in parts of this country, particularly in 
the Deep South, ushered in an era of resistance to the progress that 
had been made, antibusing, antiaffirmative action.
  And then, of course, we have got Barack Obama who was elected in what 
many of us viewed as an incredible step in the right direction. African 
Americans, having gone from the outhouse to the White House. Eight 
years of tremendous progress in moving this country forward, followed 
by the election of Donald Trump, a man who spent 5 years perpetrating 
the racist lie that Barack Obama was not born in the United States of 
America.
  And many of us are wondering, why were so many people who worship at 
the altar of White supremacy drawn to Donald Trump's campaign? What was 
it about this individual that so many folks dripping in hatred flocked 
to his candidacy? That is not to say that everyone who voted for Donald 
Trump is a racist. We do know that every racist in America voted for 
Donald Trump. That is a problem.
  And so, again, I just ask the question in closing: Is this all a big 
coincidence? We know part of it is the backlash that has often occurred 
whenever we have made progress in America. But this President has a 
responsibility to address the rise in hate crimes that have taken place 
on his watch, whether or not his election is directly connected to it.
  Many of us have our own suspicions, but he is the Commander in Chief.

                              {time}  2000

  He has got to tell his Attorney General, who is straight out of 
central casting in terms of the good old boys: Your job as chief law 
enforcement officer in the land is to enforce the laws whether you like 
them or not.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Members are reminded to refrain from 
engaging in personalities toward the President.
  The gentlewoman from the Virgin Islands may continue.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from New York 
(Mr. Jeffries).
  Mr. JEFFRIES. In closing, Mr. Speaker, I will simply say that every 
single thing that has been said--and I would urge you to challenge 
anything as a fact. In fact, there are facts that have been left out in 
terms of my remarks about the 45th President of the United States. I 
have actually been kind of gentle as it relates to the person who is 
occupying 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue right now, but more to come. I would 
welcome the Speaker to dispute anything that has been said in the name 
of us trying to move this country forward consistent with the notions 
of equal protection under the law and liberty and justice for all.
  Ms. PLASKETT. I thank Congressman Jeffries and I really appreciate 
his remarks. I know that this House has rules and is concerned about 
decorum in here. We at the Congressional Black Caucus are also very 
concerned about decorum. While we uphold the position of the President 
of the United States, many individuals--particularly constituents, the 
underserved within our communities--are fearful about us actually 
speaking out, specifically to the personage and to the person of 
President Donald Trump.
  What we are trying to do in this Special Order is speak unrefutable 
facts; not about the personality, not subjective discussion about the 
President, not our feelings, and not our fears, but the actual facts of 
what has happened in this country and what is happening in this country 
because that is life for our children, that is the very essence of us 
continuing, and that is what democracy is about.
  If we cannot critique the actions of our President, then that is very 
fearful

[[Page H4843]]

to us as Americans and very fearful to this House, which is supposed to 
be a separate branch of government and which I recall maybe a year ago 
it speaking very vehemently against the person who was in the White 
House at that time.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentlewoman from New Jersey (Mrs. Watson 
Coleman), who is my classmate. I thank Congresswoman Watson Coleman for 
her work, particularly in working with other Congressional Black Caucus 
women to found the Caucus for Black Women and Girls, which is very 
important right now because this is a forgotten group quite often here 
in the United States, and the gentlewoman is advocating and speaking 
out for those individuals.
  Mrs. WATSON COLEMAN. Mr. Speaker, I thank the Congresswoman so much 
for her leadership and this Special Order hour and considering this 
subject matter that we are going to discuss.
  I want to talk a little bit about something that has sort of been my 
observation and my experiences for a very long period of time and I 
think that are actually exacerbated by this Presidency that we 
currently have in this House. Let me, by way of association, just 
comment positively to the remarks of my colleague and the former 
speaker, Hakeem Jeffries from New York.
  I entitled my remarks ``From the Cradle to the Grave.''
  From the cradle to the grave, Black people in America are required to 
be resilient, courteous, and persistent. The rules are always 
different.
  From the cradle to the grave, Black people in America must be 
comfortable and confident in ourselves, but only so much so that we do 
not intimidate or aggravate.
  From the cradle to the grave, Black people in America are told our 
plight, our struggle, and our sacrifice is a mere fantasy in post-
racial America while we witness the reality of institutional racism, 
conscious discrimination, and our rich history erased or appropriated.

  From cradle to grave, Black people in America experience this racism 
and discrimination walking home from the corner store eating a pack of 
Skittles, listening to music at a gas station, or simply sitting in our 
neighborhood park.
  We experience this racism and discrimination showing up to school in 
our natural hairstyles, shopping in our favorite stores, or even just 
showing up to work--including the Senate and the House of 
Representatives.
  Last Wednesday, it was reported that Black troops are far more likely 
than their White counterparts to face court-martial or other forms of 
military punishment.
  National data shows us that Black girls are 5.5 times more likely to 
be suspended from school than White girls. That rate actually balloons 
in my State of New Jersey to 8.5 percent. More than 60 years after 
Brown v. Board of Education, school systems in the United States are 
still separate and unequal.
  As of 2014, California had 31 open desegregation cases. In 2016, a 
Presidential candidate ran a campaign on divisive rhetoric that 
targeted our communities, our well-being, and our safe spaces. It only 
gets worse.
  From the cradle to the grave, we are told to calm down, sit down, and 
be courteous and humble. From the cradle to the grave, the experiences, 
the challenges, the stories, our history, and even our very being are 
kept out of boardrooms, classrooms, voting booths, department stores, 
history books, movie screens, television scripts, and the like.
  But let me just tell you that, from the cradle to the grave, we are 
built to persevere, we are strengthened to overcome, we are born to 
lead, we are committed to uplift, and we are fully equipped to soar 
with weights on our shoulders even in these times and even under this 
Presidency. And guess what. We do.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman very much for her 
inspiring words and motivation to us all.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Evans). 
We always bring up the fact that Congressman Dwight Evans is a 
freshman, but he isn't really a freshman. Everybody acknowledges his 
leadership in his work in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the State 
house that transcends him as a freshman. We call the gentleman a 
superfreshman in that respect because he comes with a great deal of 
experience and wisdom here to the House floor. I am very anxious to 
hear what the gentleman has to speak about related to hate crimes and 
the rise of domestic terrorism against people of color and against 
minorities here in this country.
  Mr. EVANS. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman from the Virgin 
Islands for her leadership, along with my colleague from Texas, because 
both of them have demonstrated real clear leadership for the 
Congressional Black Caucus and the leadership of our chairman, Cedric 
Richmond. So I thank both of them publicly for what they have done and 
all of the members of the Congressional Black Caucus.
  Mr. Speaker, we have a lot to lose under the Trump administration. It 
has been very clear, as has been stated by all of my colleagues, from 
healthcare to food policy, to education, to affordable housing, the 
President and his party continue to look for ways to take away what we 
have come to know as fundamental programs behind building stronger 
neighborhoods.
  Our Nation is facing challenging times and we simply cannot afford to 
carry on business as usual. From the nooses found at the Smithsonian 
National Museum of African American History and Culture to the racial 
slur spray-painted on LeBron James' house during the NBA finals and 
attacks against Jewish community centers and vandalism in Jewish 
cemeteries, our country and our globe are sadly seeing horrific 
increases in discrimination and racially biased incidents.
  Dr. King always said: We have come over here in different boats, but 
we are now in the same boat.
  I really mean just that. Think about it: an attack against one of us 
is an attack against all of us. We know we have come a long way in our 
fight against racial intolerance and hate in our country, but our 
journey continues. It doesn't matter if you are Black, Jewish, 
Hispanic, or LGBT. We are stronger together when we celebrate both our 
similarities and our differences.
  When we watch the news, it is incredibly upsetting to see what is 
still happening in 2017. A little over a week ago at the Smithsonian 
National Museum of African American History and Culture here in D.C., 
we found another noose on the Smithsonian grounds. The museum's 
founding director said: ``It is a painful reminder of the challenges 
that African Americans continue to face.''
  We know that we are not only seeing violence and intolerance against 
the African-American community, but it is everywhere. This year at the 
Mount Carmel Cemetery, a Jewish cemetery just outside of my district in 
northeast Philadelphia, countless tombstones were toppled and 
vandalized. Days after this, the JCC in Wynnewood in my district 
received a bomb threat.
  These are just a few of the truly cowardly acts of violence taking 
place in our neighborhoods, yet our Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, 
and the President claim to be tough on crime. They want to put more 
people in cities behind bars.
  This weekend, Mr. Speaker, I was the keynote speaker at Gaudenzia, an 
addiction treatment and recovery center in my district. The graduates 
are some of the strongest individuals in our city, and their stories of 
perseverance and hard work are truly inspiring. I always say: Where you 
start is not where you end up.
  Throughout my career, I have been dedicated to trying to find ways to 
build stronger neighborhoods block by block. To do this, we have to 
make good jobs, great schools, and access to healthcare a reality.
  We know the tradition and reentry back into our neighborhoods isn't 
always easy. In Philadelphia, ShopRite supermarket is hiring to give 
good-paying jobs to those who formerly were incarcerated. The company 
estimates they have given over 500 jobs to formerly incarcerated 
individuals. This is the result in one city.
  Sadly, we know that racism and bigotry are still a factor in our 
communities. We have to confront this head-on. As the Congressional 
Black Caucus

[[Page H4844]]

collectively stands here today, we will not accept what is taking 
place. We are prepared to face these challenges, and we are asking 
others to join us because we recognize that we can move this country 
forward, but it will take all of us.
  So what we are doing here today is raising the awareness because we 
must have this conversation in a public way. We must deal with this 
issue of racism, noninclusion, and discrimination. No longer can we 
accept this.
  Mr. Speaker, I say to you today: As a member of the Congressional 
Black Caucus, we are prepared to do our part.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman very much for his 
remarks and continued work to discuss middle communities, middle 
neighborhoods, and the importance of these communities and how they 
need to be protected.
  Congressman Veasey, we have had a discussion here this evening about 
so much of the rise in hate crimes and the rise of racial tensions. I 
know that this weekend Puerto Rico had its plebiscite in which they 
talked about becoming a State.
  One of the things that I often talk to people about is the Virgin 
Islands, Guam, American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto 
Rico, all of us are territories now after 100 years.
  It was never the intent of Congress for areas of the United States to 
be a territory for 100 years except for the fact that these are now 
people of color. These are communities of people of color. So based on 
the insular cases 100 years ago which said that the people living in 
the territories and offshore territories were people of alien races who 
couldn't understand Anglo-Saxon principles of law, that is why we were 
not able to have the full-fledged rights of American citizens.

                              {time}  2015

  Now we are seeing, even here on the mainland, individuals, people of 
color, who are being treated as second-class citizens and who are not 
afforded the full protection of this country.
  When you have incidents like on May 20 with Richard Collins, on May 
26 with Jeremy Joseph Christian, who began shouting racial slurs at two 
women on a Portland, Oregon, train, and as the two men stepped in to 
de-escalate the situation, those two great men were stabbed to death, 
and a third man was wounded, much needs to be done.
  We have our moments of silence when there are mass shootings. We 
mourn for the families of Pulse nightclub and for what happened in 
those areas. But it is not enough for us to have Special Order hours, 
to have discussions, or even have moments of silence. Action must be 
taken by this administration.
  Mr. VEASEY. Absolutely. We do need action taken by this 
administration, Representative Plaskett.
  I mentioned to you earlier that I wanted to talk about the 
President's history on racism and some of the things that came out in 
the campaign--not anything new but, nevertheless, very disturbing--and 
why we need for the President honestly to lead this discussion.


                             General Leave

  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members 
may have 5 legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and 
include any extraneous material on the subject of this Special Order 
hour.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Smucker). Is there objection to the 
request of the gentlewoman from the Virgin Islands?
  There was no objection.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Mr. Speaker, I know that there were other issues that 
the gentleman wanted to discuss with regard to some of these and 
examples that he wanted to give as well, and I yield to the gentleman 
from Texas.
  Mr. VEASEY. Very briefly, we have the President's history on racism 
from the very beginning of his candidacy, of course, and the way he 
disparaged Mexicans and Mexican Americans in this country by calling 
people rapists and accusing people of bringing disease and crime into 
the United States, pretending that he didn't know who David Duke was. 
It is unbelievable, pretending to not know who David Duke was.
  Ms. PLASKETT. I think he knows now.
  Mr. VEASEY. Even condoning the beating of a Black Lives Matter 
protester, his history extends before that.
  Of course, it was very well covered, very well chronicled during the 
campaign about the Justice Department suing his real estate company and 
his father's real estate company for not renting apartments to Black 
people, not renting apartments to African-American potential tenants. 
Of course, they ultimately settled that lawsuit because of the 
wrongdoing that happened there.
  Ms. PLASKETT. That was in the 1970s, I believe.
  Mr. VEASEY. The gentlewoman is absolutely correct.
  In 1989, he encouraged and celebrated the wrongful imprisonment of 
the Central Park Five and took out full-page ads in New York area 
newspapers calling for the return of the death penalty in response to a 
very infamous case in which a woman was beaten and raped while jogging 
in Manhattan's Central Park.
  Back then, before he was President, Donald Trump said: They should be 
forced to suffer, and when they kill, they should be executed for their 
crimes. I want these murderers and always will.
  Of course, there was a lot of public outrage over that case. It was 
very well talked about. It was on all the talk shows and what have you.
  Those men wrongfully spent time in prison because the DNA evidence 
exonerated them.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Actually, they weren't men at the time. They were 
teenagers.
  Mr. VEASEY. They were teenagers at the time.
  Even after the DNA evidence exonerated them, he still said that maybe 
they could be guilty of something. I thought that was a terrible thing 
to say.
  Of course, the New Jersey Casino Control Commission fined Trump Plaza 
Hotel and Casino $200,000 in 1992 because managers would remove 
African-American car dealers at the request of certain big-time 
gamblers that would come in.
  In 1996, 20 African Americans in Indiana sued Trump for failing to 
honor a promise to hire mostly minority workers for a riverboat casino 
on Lake Michigan.
  Let me tell you why, even despite this, the President has the ability 
to lead a discussion on race.
  You might remember Shirley Sherrod. I don't know if that name rings a 
bell with you. She was an African-American agricultural worker who 
worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Georgia Department 
of Agriculture, and was given an example of how she overcame her own 
bias and her own racism.
  Of course, her comments were misconstrued and the tapes were made to 
sound one way. She ultimately lost her job. She was offered her job 
back after it was proven this conservative newspaper had actually tried 
to disparage her so they could have some sort of a racism equivalent or 
something to try to make the readers feel better.
  The reason why I bring that up is because here was a woman that was 
being honest about and trying to give an example about how she overcame 
bias and how she overcame prejudice. The President has an opportunity 
to talk about Central Park, to talk about racism in his apartments, to 
talk about the issues at the casino, to talk about the other areas in 
his life where he has fallen quite short when it comes to fairness and 
honesty and racism. So we need him to lead that discussion so we can 
begin to talk more and begin to heal our country.
  Ms. PLASKETT. Part of leadership is expressing your shortcomings and 
using that as an opportunity to move forward and to move the Nation 
forward. So many people look to our President for his leadership and 
for his thoughts and his out-of-the-box thinking. This would be 
tremendous not only to the people who are being oppressed, but to 
others as well.
  One of the things I wanted to leave us with was a quote and some work 
that the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is working on, 
that has a mission to secure equal justice for all through the rule of 
law, targeting, in particular, the inequities confronting African 
Americans and other racial and ethnic minorities.
  In December 2016, Kristen Clarke, who is the president, stated: 
``Hate

[[Page H4845]]

crimes and hate-filled incidents stand as a dark cloud over our 
democracy. The recent spike in hate crimes is attributable, in part, to 
racially charged rhetoric that characterized the 2016 election cycle 
and the rise of `alt-right' white nationalist extremism. This is a 
moment that calls for Federal, State, and local officials to use every 
tool in their arsenal to fully investigate and prosecute these 
incidents when they occur.''
  And we from the Congressional Black Caucus say, as well, to eradicate 
this from our Nation.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, the 2016 
presidential election was an exceptionally bitter fight between 
Republicans and Democrats. The election highlighted many of the 
existing divides between many Americans and the underlying frustrations 
that we have been wrestling with as a people. Couple this with the 
resentful partisanship that we have experienced in Congress, and it is 
quite clear that there are deep rifts dividing our country. However, 
one of the biggest consequences of this partisan bickering and 
inability to compromise has been the increase in the frequency of hate 
crimes across America.
  The latest figures from the Southern Poverty Law Center estimate that 
there have been nearly 1,372 bias incidents between the day after the 
election and February 7, when these statistics were last reported. SPLC 
is collecting self-reported data from across the country in an effort 
to monitor ``bias incidents''--or acts of hostility that are motivated 
by racism or other prejudices--across the United States. While it is 
important to acknowledge the limitations of self-reported data, this 
trend is consistent with several other incidents reported nationwide 
that have challenged the notion that we are living in a post-racial 
society.
  For example, several nooses were found throughout our nation's 
capital this month--one near an elementary school, another in the 
African American Museum of History and Culture, and on American 
University's campus. On June 2, a Muslim couple was allegedly harassed 
in Oregon and told to go back to their country. More prominently, two 
men in Portland were stabbed to death and another wounded when they 
tried to intervene on behalf of two women, one of whom was wearing a 
hijab, who were being verbally assaulted by a man yelling slurs.
  Mr. Speaker, these are just a few of the horrendous incidents being 
reported in the wake of this election and the hateful rhetoric that has 
come to define the political narrative. However, I am here to join my 
colleagues not only to denounce these actions and hateful words, but 
also to remind ourselves that we are better than this. We are better 
than this as a people and a nation, and we must all do our part to 
discourage this behavior and hold these violators accountable. Until we 
all take active roles within our society and democracy, we cannot 
reasonably expect our society to overcome these challenges and emerge a 
stronger society. I am proud to join my colleagues tonight in sending a 
clear message that these acts of hatred and violence will not be 
tolerated. Not today, not ever.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Members are reminded to refrain from 
engaging in personalities toward the President.

                          ____________________