In Atlanta, President Biden addressed the increasing violence against the AAPI population and told Americans that silence in the face of racism is complicity.
President Biden, “Words have consequences. It’s the coronavirus, full stop.” pic.twitter.com/c1PndL6Gjy
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) March 19, 2021
President Biden said:
We’re learning again what we have always known: Words have consequences. It’s the coronavirus, full stop. The conversation we had today with the AAPI leaders and that we’re hearing all across the country is that hate and violence often hide in plain sight. It is often met with silence. That’s been true throughout our history. But that has to change because our silence is complicity. We cannot be complicit. We have to speak out. We have to act.
In my first week in office, I signed an executive order directing federal agencies to combat this resurgence of xenophobia. The Department of Justice is strengthening its justice with the AAPI community to prevent these crimes. In addition to its other work to take on violent extremists and domestic terrorism. I’m calling on Congress to pass and get my — to get to my desk the COVID-19 hate crimes act. And the House just passed the Violence Against Women Act, a law I authored more than 25 years ago. It was one of my proudest legislative achievements. I called on the Senate to quickly pass it and get to my desk. But for all the good the laws can do, we have to change our hearts. Hate can have no safe harbor in America. It must stop. It’s on all of us, all of us together to make it stop.
Racists really hate being called out for their racism. Racist behavior flourishes when people turn a blind year. For years, the mainstream press enabled Trump‘s racism by not confronting him on it. They allowed him to stand in front of them in Brady Briefing Room and call the coronavirus the “China virus.”
President Biden is right. Words have consequences, and when good people hear those words and choose to do nothing, they watering the seeds of racism.
A president can’t unilaterally end racism, but they can set a good example, and do what Biden did when he encouraged others to join the fight.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association