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Hastings Introduces Resolution on Black-Jewish Relations and the June 10 Shooting at the U.S. Holocaust Museum


(Washington, DC) Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-Miramar) has introduced a resolution expressing the sense of Congress regarding Black-Jewish relations and the June 10, 2009 shooting at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.   In particular, the resolution honors the historic relationship between African Americans and Jewish Americans and the sacrifice of Special Police Officer Stephen T. Johns in his defense of the staff and visitors of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. 


“Last week’s tragic act of violence reminds us yet again that black Americans and Jewish Americans share a great deal in common.  Our two communities have a long history of fighting injustice and hate, whether in the form of racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia, or any other form of senseless hatred.  We have so often stood together, united in our desire to create a world free from the kind of violence that plagued this nation last week.  When Jewish Americans helped found the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in 1909 and the Urban League in 1910, they did so out of a conviction that by mitigating the evils of racial intolerance all people would benefit from an America free of discrimination and committed to equal justice and equal opportunity for all,” said Hastings. 


“I hope that last week’s shooting at the Holocaust Museum will not be dismissed as the random ravings of a crazed lunatic.  But let us also not forget that there have been many more acts of violence here in this country since last week, and it is incumbent upon both of our communities – indeed, our entire society – to boldly confront not only the white supremacists but also the gang violence, and not only the anti-Jewish screeds but also the horrific racial diatribes littering the social conscience.  We must not only improve security at the Holocaust Museum and other Jewish institutions but also put more police on the streets in our urban neighborhoods; not only redouble our efforts on education, training, and outreach but also take concrete measures to expand opportunities like college, jobs, and health care to all Americans.  Let us once again have African Americans and Jewish Americans stand together for justice and equality.”


Congressman Alcee L. Hastings is Vice Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, a senior member of the House Rules Committee, and Co-Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission.


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