Washington, D.C. – Following the shootings in Buffalo that killed ten people at a Tops supermarket, People For the American Way President Ben Jealous released the following statement:
“Our hearts go out to the families of the people gunned down in Buffalo in a racially-motivated mass murder. This moment of horrific violence demands a reckoning among Republican politicians. The Far Right and its embrace of Great Replacement theories and other racist ideology threaten to destroy our democracy and tear this country apart. The Republican party has begun to make the same mistake the Democratic party made in the decades after the Civil War. They are allowing themselves to become the party that is tolerant of violent white supremacy and protects and promotes the politicians who are seeking to mainstream it in our culture.
“Now is a time for national Republican leaders to go to Buffalo and reflect. They should walk in the steps of the great 19th century Republican leader and civil rights pioneer Frederick Douglass. They should heed the late Jack Kemp, Republican congressman, and onetime Buffalo Bills quarterback, who, when he was questioned if there was any contradiction between being a Republican and an active member of the NAACP, said, ‘I can’t help but care about the rights of the people I used to shower with.’ Now is the time to reject the twin evils of mass violence and racial, ethnic and religious hatred. Now is also a time to recognize that our laws make mass shooting so much easier, and to commit to changing those laws at last and to repudiating white supremacy and the conspiracies it spawns.”
About People For the American Way
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and build a democratic society that implements the ideals of freedom, equality, opportunity and justice for all. We encourage civic participation, defend fundamental rights, and fight to dismantle systemic barriers to equitable opportunity. Learn more: https://www.pfaw.org