Press Releases

The Congressional Tri-Caucus Statement on the Lynching of Ahmaud Arbery

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Washington, May 8, 2020 | comments

The Chairs of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC)—also known as the Congressional Tri-Caucus, have released the following statement on the racially motivated killing of Ahmaud Arbery, who was targeted by two white men, while jogging in his neighborhood:

“On February 23, 2020, a young Ahmaud Arbery’s life was cut short because two White men were uncomfortable with an unarmed Black man jogging in the neighborhood they shared. What the world witnessed on the video that leaked was yet another racially-motivated murder in our country. How many times will we continue to see such heinous acts of White supremacy? And how many times will it take a national public outcry to result in an arrest? We have come to a critical juncture in our country, where we must be honest with ourselves and call these crimes what they really are - lynchings. Arbery was targeted, harassed, and then killed. His death is a vicious reminder that the past is never that far away. As recently as two years ago, a White man who lynched a Black man was convicted and executed. This is why the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Bill needs to passed and signed in to law. This bill passed the House in February and is still sitting on the desk of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to be taken up for a vote. It is unfortunate that at a time when our communities are being devastated by COVID-19, we are also saddled with pain of modern-day lynchings,” said Congresswoman Karen Bass (CA-37), Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.

“Were it not for the horrific video that showed two White men deliberately hunting down an unarmed Black man while he was simply out on his daily jog, there might never have been justice for the cold-blooded murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Even now, justice is not guaranteed, as shown by our country’s poor track record of successfully prosecuting the murders of unarmed Black men and boys. Ahmaud was killed solely because of his skin color, just as so many before him have been. This is a fear felt acutely in the Black community and we must take action to address the deep-seated racism and inequities in our society that have enabled these atrocities to happen. Ahmaud’s killers must be brought to justice to send a clear signal that vigilantes and White supremacists who decide to act on nothing but their own prejudices are criminals who will be held accountable for their actions,” said Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.

“Justice can never be fully achieved because Ahmaud Arbery, a young black man with a beautiful future, should still be alive. The arrest of his accused killers is delayed and necessary news, but it is merely the first step for holding those responsible for his death accountable for their actions. From Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia to Sean Reed in Indiana to Michael Ramos in Texas, young people of color are not free from persecution and are afraid for their safety. We have all witnessed the injustice, and now we must marshal our collective moral and political will for systemic reform and real change," said Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

While the father and son duo Gregory McMichael and Travis McMichael have finally been arrested and charged for their crime, history has shown us that this is not enough. For justice to be served for Ahmaud Arbery and his family, all involved parties must be arrested, tried and convicted to the highest extent of the law for their role in his murder. No one is above the law.

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