Biden Signs Anti-Hate Asian Hate Crime Bill

Marmee Rooke

Biden signed the Democrat’s Asian hate bill -Covid-19 Hate Crimes Act- that passed the Senate in April. The Senate passed the bill from the House with a 94-1 vote, with Sen. Josh Hawley from Missouri being the only nay vote. The law was written to curtail the increase in brutal attacks against Asian-Americans.

Hawley said that “it’s too broad. As a former prosecutor, my view is it’s dangerous to simply give the federal government open-ended authority to defines a whole new class of federal hate crime incidents.”

Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs opposed the House’s version of the bill because it “does nothing to protect any individual victim or any individual group.” Instead, he argues that this bill does nothing but giving “a bunch of federal money out.”

Biden spoke today, saying, “My message to all of those who are hurting is – we see you,” the aging President said. “The Congress said we see you. And we are committed to stop the hatred and the bias.”

Kamala Harris also spoke, saying, “I have seen how hate can impede our progress. And I have seen how people uniting against hate can strengthen our country.”

She continued saying, “Racism exists in America. Xenophobia exists in America, antisemitism, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia – it all exists. And so, the work to address injustice wherever it exists remains the work ahead.”

The Covid-19 Hate Crimes Act text said that Congress found that “there were nearly 3,800 reported cases of anti-Asian discrimination and incidents related to COVID-19.” It also noted that 90% of these attacks are committed are cited as a “race” issue.

What it means:

The Attorney General of the United States will have “no later than seven days after the date” the Act goes into effect to create a position “whose responsibility” will be to “facilitate the expedited review of hate crimes.”

The Act sets to establish an “online reporting of hate crimes.” It says that the online reporting must be “equally effective for people with disabilities as for people without disabilities.” The Act allows the government to “collect information from each law enforcement agency” that receives funding from the grants approved in the legislation.

The Act is expected to give a “complete understanding of the national problem posed by hate crimes.” It plans to do this by addressing the “quality and quantity of training that State and local law enforcement agencies receive on the identification and reporting of suspected bias-motivated crimes.”

Congress claims in the Act that hate crimes are “serious, widespread, and interstate in nature as to warrant Federal financial assistance to States and local jurisdictions.” According to 42 USC 3631: The Public Health and Welfare, a hate crime pertains to anyone who “by force or threat of force willfully injures, intimidates or interferes with, or attempts to injure, intimidate or interfere with any persons because of his race, color, religion, sex handicap, familial status, or national origin.”

The Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services are now required to create guidance to “expand public education campaigns aimed at raising awareness of hate crimes and reaching victims.”

Congress writes in the Act that “the United States will always stand in solidarity with those affected by incidents of hate that have affected the Asian and Pacific Islander communities.”

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