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Tell Congress: Pass the Disarm Hate Act

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The petition to Congress reads:

"People convicted of hate crimes should not have access to firearms. Pass the Disarm Hate Act."

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    Tell Congress: Pass the Disarm Hate Act

    1,094.

    That’s how many hate crimes our friends at the Southern Poverty Law Center cataloged in just the first month after last year’s election.1

    The rate has slowed since then, but harassment, intimidation and violence based on racial bias and stereotypes has been a painful and fatal constant in the news since Donald Trump started campaigning and entered the White House.2 And thanks to weak gun laws across the country, individuals with misdemeanor hate crime convictions can freely arm themselves with lethal weapons.

    Now Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey and Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline have introduced the Disarm Hate Act – legislation that would prevent anyone who has been convicted of a hate crime from buying a gun. Even though it is obvious that people with hate crime convictions should not have access to guns, we know that the NRA-bought-and-backed Republicans in Congress will never pass this commonsense bill without intense public pressure. We have to take action now.

    Tell Congress: People convicted of hate crimes should not have access to firearms. Pass the Disarm Hate Act.

    Gun violence kills an average of 93 people every day in the United States and injures hundreds more. Easy access to guns weaponizes hate and prejudice with deadly results. In just the last few years:

    • A man acting out his anti-LGBTQ prejudices massacred 49 people – most of whom were people of color – at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida last summer.3
    • White supremacist Dylann Roof murdered nine African-American people in Charleston, South Carolina.4
    • A man killed one Indian man and seriously wounded another after shouting racial slurs at them in a bar in Olathe, Kansas.5
    • A gunman opened fire in a Sikh temple, killing six people in Milwaukee.6

    The Department of Justice estimates that nearly 260,000 hate crimes occurred every year between 2007 and 2011.7 Roughly 43,000 of the hate crimes committed between 2010 to 2014 involved the use or threat of a gun.8

    It is unacceptable that someone with a hate crime conviction can still legally purchase or possess a gun. The Disarm Hate Act would close that loophole and keep firearms away from bigoted, hateful people with a history of committing hate crimes.

    We know that the NRA-controlled Republicans in Congress will fight any gun control measure, even one designed to protect historically marginalized and vulnerable communities from bigoted violence. That’s why we are gathering as many signatures as possible to build pressure on Congress to act.

    Tell Congress: People convicted of hate crimes should not have access to firearms. Pass the Disarm Hate Act.

    Thank you for standing up to the NRA.

    References:

    1. Hatewatch Staff, “Update: 1,094 Bias-Related Incidents in the Month Following the Election,” Southern Poverty Law Center, Dec. 16, 2016.
    2. Anna North, “The Scope of Hate in 2017,” The New York Times, June 1, 2017.
    3. Katie Mettler, “A year ago, 49 people died at Pulse nightclub. Today, Orlando remembers,” The Washington Post, June 12, 2017.
    4. Mark Berman, “Dylann Roof will plead guilty to murder for Charleston church massacre, avoiding second death-penalty trial,” The Washington Post, March 31, 2017.
    5. John Eligon, Alan Blinder and Nida Najar, “Hate Crime Is Feared as 2 Indian Engineers Are Shot in Kansas,” The New York Times, Feb. 24, 2017.
    6. Steven Yaccino, Michael Schwirtz and Mark Santora, “Gunman Kills 6 at a Sikh Temple Near Milwaukee,” The New York Times, Aug. 5, 2012.
    7. Nathan Sandholtz, Lynn Langton and Michael G. Planty, “Hate Crime Victimization, 2003-2011,” Bureau of Justice Statistics, March 21, 2013.
    8. Tom Caiazza, “RELEASE: CAP Report Finds 43,000 Hate Crimes Involved Guns from 2010 to 2014, Calls for Legislation Barring Individuals Convicted of Misdemeanor Hate Crimes from Obtaining Guns,” Center for American Progress, Feb. 24, 2016.