Members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) firmly stated that Black Americans are being attacked in various ways nationwide, with Republicans leading these efforts.
“We refuse to be victims, and we will not be silenced,” declared CBC Chairman and Representative Steven Horsford (D-Nev.) during a State of Black America press event held at the Capitol.
“Our fundamental rights are under siege, and our history is being denied. But we will not passively witness these actions. Too many people count on us to fight for them.”
Recent events in several GOP-led state legislatures have intensified concerns within the CBC.
Despite a Supreme Court order, Alabama and Louisiana legislatures refused to create an additional district with a majority of Black residents.
The Florida State Board of Education has approved new education guidelines that downplay the harsh history of slavery.
Instead, they emphasize the perceived benefits gained from the skills of enslaved people.
Rep. Maxwell Frost from Florida, the youngest member of the House, expressed frustration with his state’s guidelines.
He said these guidelines aim to erase and indoctrinate this generation with white supremacy.
However, Frost warned that Florida officials should not underestimate Black America’s determination to organize and resist.
Members of the CBC said that statements made by their GOP counterparts at the Capitol have deeply disturbed them, adding to the mounting discontent. Rep. Eli Crane from Arizona made an offensive comment during a House floor debate by referring to Black people as “colored people.”
Meanwhile, Sen. Tommy Tuberville from Alabama defended a controversial statement by denying the racism of white nationalists.
Horsford acknowledged that expectations from Republican leaders are minimal at this point, but Representative Troy Carter (D-La.) demanded that the party’s leaders take a stand against such bigotry.
“The silence from Republicans and others in the face of such egregious statements is deafening,” Carter said. “We will not condone the erasing of history. We must stand together to put an end to this.”
The CBC has issued a list of demands, calling on the Department of Justice and the Department of Education to launch investigations into education policies.
The caucus recently met with Education Secretary Miguel Cardona to discuss policies about Black history.
They also sent formal letters to Cardona and Attorney General Merrick Garland, urging for a “strong legal strategy.”
“Black people did not benefit from slavery; we built this country,” emphasized Horsford. “Our toil, sweat, and tears went into constructing the very foundation of this nation. Elevating Black America is an elevation for all. We will not tolerate this assault on our rights.”