‘America Is Not A Racist Country’: After Buffalo Shooting, Sen. Tim Scott Urges Americans To Heal, Not Point Fingers
WASHINGTON — In the wake of the racially motivated mass shooting that left 10 dead and three wounded in Buffalo, one of the most powerful black lawmakers in the country is urging Americans to blame the shooter and not their political opponents.
Sen. Tim Scott, (R-S.C.), said there is precedent for coming together and healing after such a tragedy, and pointed to how his own state pulled together following a 2015 mass shooting, also by a white supremacist. In that attack, a white man shot and killed nine black members of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston.
“A racist walked into a church and killed my friend, the pastor of the church … and eight other African-Americans simply because they were black,” Scott said. “He sat through a Bible study for 90 minutes, pulled out a weapon and executed those nine lives.”
“And so for me, I don’t think about it from a political perspective first or second, think about it from just a human perspective of the loss of my friends,” he added.
“Blaming the other side, looking for someone to be the fall person — it should be below leaders in America,” Scott said.
The solution the Biden Administration should be seeking is “unifying our country, not polarizing our country,” Scott said.
Scott emphasized the forgiveness that the families showed to the killer, even amid their pain.
“African Americans and white folks, 20,000, showed up at the largest bridge in Charleston, South Carolina, to say, in the place where the Civil War started, ‘We stand together,’” he said. “And because of of the scene that happened a couple of days before that, in a courtroom, when nine family representatives all walked into the courtroom, looked into a video camera, into the eyes of the killer and said, ‘We forgive you.’ That’s the kind of powerful, positive leadership we need in this country that heals this nation, that restores hope in this nation.”
Addressing how the Biden administration has handled racial issues so far, Scott pointed to Biden’s policies and the results of those policies.
“I would say if you’re looking at inflation, if you’re looking at crime rates, the Biden administration is failing the very people [of whom Biden] said ‘You can’t be black if you don’t vote for me,’” Scott said. “That’s awful.”
The senator asked that Americans imagine the struggle of “the average single mom living paycheck to paycheck when her gas price in South Carolina goes from a $1.99 in December 2020 to $4 a gallon right now.”
“A 100% increase in the cost of gas means a reduction in her choice of food, in clothing for her kids,” he said.
“Let’s think about the violent crimes,” Scott said. “Too often, these absolutely atrocious situations are occurring in big blue cities where they’re all controlled by Democrats. Violent crime rates in those cities have skyrocketed to the point where 2019 homicides increased by 44%, and African-Americans and Hispanics represent 85% of that additional increase.”
The good news, according to Scott, is that there are Republicans who have “taken a strong, powerful stand on behalf of people working paycheck to paycheck.”
“What did we do when we had the opportunity?” he asked, referring to Republican wins during former President Donald Trump’s administration. “Well, we actually lowered the taxes of a single mother by 70%, federal taxes. We brought $4,000, on average, back to how every dual parent household.”
“We also saw the lowest poverty rate in the history of the country in 2019, in part because of the passage of opportunity zones, that brought $29 billion into the poorest, typically majority minority communities,” he continued. “We saw unemployment rates go, for African-Americans, the lowest record ever recorded. Same is true for Hispanics. Same is true for Asians, and a 70-year low for women. So if you are looking for the right solution, look, right. If you’re looking for the wrong solution. You can look left.”
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