Biden works to stability civil rights and prison justice

WASHINGTON (AP) – At one end of Pennsylvania Avenue, he mourned the family of a fallen police officer. On the other hand, he promised to end the epidemic of black men killed by the police.

In a matter of hours on Tuesday, President Joe Biden’s difficult balancing act in policing was vividly portrayed. He is desperate to address criminal justice and civil rights issues as the White House nervously watches the riots in Minnesota as the trial of the white policeman accused of killing George Floyd draws to a close.

The test for Biden comes as the nation is on the verge of trial of Derek Chauvin, who prosecutors said he killed Floyd, a black man, last year by putting a knee on his neck for about nine minutes. Tensions were only heightened by the death of another Minnesota black this week, Daunte Wright, who was killed after police said a white officer accidentally reached for his pistol instead of a taser.

Biden has pledged to help fight racism in policing and help African Americans, who have backed him in large numbers over the past year following protests that gripped the nation after Floyd’s death and resumed a national race talk. But he has long projected himself as an ally of the police, including Tuesday when he traveled to the U.S. Capitol to find William Evans, a Capitol cop who was killed when a suspect rammed him with his car outside the Citadel of Democracy, To show respect.

“I didn’t know Billy, but I did know Billy,” Biden said at a tearful monument under the soaring rotunda. “I grew up with Billys in Claymont and Scranton, Pennsylvania. Billy was always the boy you know when you’re in a fight and outnumbered three to one. He would still jump in and know you are both getting hit. “

Two of Evans’s children clutched soft toys as they looked at their father’s flag-decked coffin, one of which was wearing his father’s police uniform hat. In a moment a replica of the US Capitol toy was dropped; Biden reached out to pick it up.

Biden, his own life of grief after burying two children and his first wife, said his prayer for the Evans family is for “the moment a smile comes before you tear”. And he said hello to the Capitol Police Department, which was still ravaged by the January 6th uprising of President Donald Trump’s supporters, in which one officer died and many others were injured.

“Never before have there been more encumbrances … and the responsibility has been placed on the shoulders of the Capitol Police,” said the president. “And yet, you hear it, you see it, you watch them and you watch them do their duty with pure courage and not complain.”

Hours later, Biden was in the Oval Office with members of the Black Congress in Congress to call a meeting to announce the support his job and infrastructure plan would give to black communities but was shadowed by the police shootings.

Admitting it was “a painful week,” Biden denounced the Wright murder as “a godly shootout” and said “we’re all here today to make real change” when it comes to monitoring color communities . He promised to do “a lot” in revising the way officials interact with African Americans during his tenure.

Representative Joyce Beatty, D-Ohio, said in a message to those injured by the shootings after the meeting: “We stand here on the White House grounds because of them and for them.”

“We feel their pain because many of us have experienced the same thing,” said Beatty. “The same discrimination, we know that there is systemic racism, we know that we need to be better at enforcing police reforms and gun reforms.” Ask them to stand with us as we stand with them. ”

So far, however, the Biden Justice Department has not been able to do much.

Attorney General Merrick Garland has signaled that civil rights are a top priority and that he is committed to combating racial discrimination in police work. During his confirmation hearing, he told lawmakers that America “does not yet have equal justice.”

Proponents hope the department’s priorities in the Biden administration will shift dramatically, with a more focus on civil rights issues, criminal justice overhauls, and police policy following nationwide protests by law enforcement against the deaths of black Americans.

Garland has also suggested that he will be more likely to approve so-called model or practice investigations by initiating probes into police departments to investigate whether systemic deficiencies contribute to or allow for the persistence of misconduct that were restricted under the Trump administration. But the job is not yet filled.

Although Biden announced Kristen Clarke, one of the country’s foremost civil rights attorneys, as head of the department’s civil rights division, while also announcing Garland’s nomination, she is not in her position just yet. Her confirmation hearing is scheduled for Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Clarke, who has received support from some of the country’s largest law enforcement agencies, dozen of police chiefs and families of victims of hate crimes, is expected to tell members of the Senate Judiciary Committee that she will bring a “clear pursuit of justice” to the Position when confirmed.

The Senate also has yet to vote to confirm Lisa Monaco as deputy attorney general and Vanita Gupta, who previously headed the Department of Justice’s civil rights division, as deputy attorney general.

Administrative officials have maintained a public silence but are keeping an eye on the situation in Minneapolis, which has rioted for two nights since the Wright murder. After the judgment in the chauvin process, there are fears of more.

Generally, however, such riots fall to the local police force, not federal officials. Federal law enforcement plays an important role, particularly in protecting federal property and buildings and in assisting local law enforcement officials. The presence of federal officials in some cities last summer, including Portland, Oregon, where agents were deployed to protect the federal court and other federal agencies, became a focus of protests on the nights of the riot.

Copyright © 2021. All rights reserved. This website is not aimed at users in the European Economic Area.

Comments are closed.