February 2, 2023

Activist, acclaimed political commentator and SiriusXM City View (Ch. 126) host Joe Madison has lengthy been a supporter of human and civil rights causes, significantly the struggle to go laws to explicitly criminalize lynching — a type of terror, management and public execution of Black individuals within the US within the nineteenth and twentieth centuries — and make it a hate crime on the federal stage.Whereas the Senate unanimously handed the Emmett Until Antilynching Act on Monday, March 7, after centuries of failed makes an attempt, Madison himself has been a vocal advocate for these efforts since 2018, when he first made public pleas to elected officers each on-line and on air.

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The Invoice and Its Historical past

The Emmett Until Antilynching Act, named after a 14-year-old Black boy from Chicago who was accused of supposedly whistling at a white lady whereas visiting household in Mississippi after which kidnapped and lynched in 1955, now declares {that a} crime may be prosecuted as a lynching when a hate crime leads to a loss of life or damage, making it punishable by as much as 30 years in jail. This comes after the Home model, sponsored by Rep. Bobby L. Rush, overwhelmingly handed 422–3 and marks a historic second in opposition to an motion that has lengthy been a instrument and image of racial violence within the nation.

In 1900, the primary anti-lynching invoice was proposed to Congress by George H. White, the one Black Congressman on the time, and didn’t make it previous committee. Within the time since, roughly 200 related payments had been filed unsuccessfully, even leading to a proper apology from the Senate for the dearth of motion on the problem in 2005. Nonetheless, it wasn’t till over a decade later that Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Tim Scott launched the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act of 2018, with Madison credited for his assist, together with an earlier dialog with Harris wherein she previewed the invoice on his present, Joe Madison The Black Eagle. This got here on the heels of Majority Chief Mitch McConnell admitting to SiriusXM’s Olivier Knox that he was unaware there wasn’t anti-lynching laws on the books and that he would assist it (Harris’ response? “Hold that tape and make copies.”)

Madison’s Anti-Lynching Activism

Within the years since, motion behind the invoice stalled after being handed within the Home, although Madison refused to take his foot off the gasoline, persevering with to query electeds and communicate with journalists in regards to the want for anti-lynching legal guidelines. Notably, Senator Rand Paul remained in opposition of the invoice, citing it as “too broad,” even because the sequence of nationwide uprisings in opposition to racial injustice following the homicide of George Floyd in 2020 renewed rigor behind passing such laws.

“I don’t suppose there’s any understanding. I feel what [Senator Paul] is doing is incorrect. And his clarification is incorrect. He made patent claims on the Senate flooring which might be simply incorrect … This was already accomplished. He had no objections in 2019. However now he’s coming to the ground to do it. And right here’s one thing that will haven’t been made obvious to you, is that he introduced this struggle to the ground. He didn’t need to. He determined, he selected the time of the struggle, do it on the day that we had been memorializing George Floyd, who was murdered in broad daylight with cameras rolling. And that to me is a stage of disrespect that simply deepens my anger and frustration,” Senator Cory Booker advised Joe Madison in June 2020.

After the introduction of a revised model, the present Emmett Until Antilynching Act, Madison spoke with Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer who promised on air to advertise stated laws in March 2021.

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Following the Home of Representatives passing the Act final month, Home Majority Chief Congressman Steny Hoyer praised Madison for his involvement with the invoice and advocacy from day one, acknowledging him as a “shifting celebration.”

“Our democracy works finest when residents come as much as Members and say ‘Hey, right here’s an issue and it must be solved, it must be addressed. We have to say one thing.’ When it’s terrible, if it’s terrible, and you probably did that and I actually do respect it,” Hoyer stated.

Senator Booker and Consultant Rush shared related sentiments, with Rush specifically calling Madison a “ethical authority.”

“You might be our inspiration, Joe, so thanks, man. I thanks to your contributions, your sacrifices, your robust voice on behalf of freedom, justice and equality,” Rush mirrored.

What’s Subsequent?

With its unanimous passing within the Senate, President Biden is anticipated to signal the invoice into regulation, formally making lynching a hate crime.

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