And what should Congress do?

Are hate crimes a problem in Delaware? We asked your members of Congress about that. Here’s what they said:

Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester

Are hate crimes a problem in Delaware?

Yes. FBI data from 2017 showed that hate crimes in Delaware had nearly doubled from the year prior. [Chart, 2017, above]

I personally visited the scene of a hate crime last year, where a swastika and a number of racist profanities were spray-painted on a car. We’ve also seen an increase in the number of acts of hate targeting the LGBTQ+ community and targeting individuals for their religious affiliation.

For any community in which they are occurring, hate crimes are a very real problem and their increased frequency should be a concern to all of us.

 

 

Should Congress do something about hate crimes and white supremacist violence in Delaware? What specifically?

Yes, Congress should do something about it.

Specifically, we need to restore the cuts that President Trump has made to Department of Homeland Security programs aimed at combatting radicalization in our local communities, including white nationalism.

We must pass universal background checks and immediately reinstate the automatic weapons ban.

Finally, all leaders, elected or otherwise should be unequivocal in our labeling of white nationalism for what it is – domestic terrorism. We all have a responsibility to call out hate when we see it and to be the example of what we want to see in the world.

Sen. Chris Coons:

Are hate crimes a problem in Delaware?

Addressing white nationalism and hate crimes isn’t just a priority for Delaware, it’s a priority for our entire country. We’ve seen an increase of hate speech online in recent years, and that reaches all 50 states, including our own.

 

Should Congress do something about hate crimes and white supremacist violence in Delaware? What specifically?

 

Everyone in America should have the ability to live free from fear and terror, regardless of who you are, where you’re from, or whom you love. Congress should pass the National Opposition to Hate, Assault, and Threats to Equality Act, or NO HATE Act, which would improve hate crimes reporting and expand assistance and resources for victims of hate crimes.

 

The bill supports the implementation of the National Incident-Based Reporting System at law enforcement agencies around the country and would help to train law enforcement officers on how to identify and report detailed information about hate crimes in their communities.

 

These efforts would help bring into focus the nature and extent of these crimes and build a better understanding of the national environment that has fostered the kind of hatred that we continue to see.

Sen. Tom Carper:

Are hate crimes a problem in Delaware? Should Congress do something about hate crimes and white supremacist violence in Delaware? What specifically?

 

 

‘E pluribus unum’ is the motto that adorns our nation’s seal. It reminds us that while we may all come from many different states and have different backgrounds, we are one nation.

 

Violent attacks by self-proclaimed white nationalists threaten our country, our communities, and the values that we hold dear as Americans. As we saw this weekend, the hatred that these individuals harbor knows no bounds. The gunman in Saturday’s shooting in El Paso reportedly traveled ten hours to massacre innocent people, simply because of their race or status as immigrants.

 

When I was the top Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, I fought for funding to provide local communities with resources to stop online radicalization, and counter violent extremism here at home.

 

This funding is an important tool to help communities and law enforcement identify potential or evolving threats—including those susceptible to radicalization by white nationalist and other hate groups—and intervene before these individuals bring harm to innocent Americans.

But instead of expanding that important program, the Trump Administration has sought to reduce staff and slash funding. That is unacceptable and leaves us vulnerable to the all too real threat of homegrown extremism that comes from within our borders.