Almost 250 years ago, America’s founders laid out a grand vision for human freedom and self-rule. It wasn’t perfect, and we continue to strengthen and improve it today. But it did ignite a fire that has shone across the world, inspiring billions to push back against oppression and fight for liberty. Nowhere has that inspirational effect been more apparent than in Hong Kong over the last several weeks.
Protestors have flooded the streets, parks, even the airport, demanding freedom for the people of Hong Kong and opposing repressive policies Beijing is trying to impose upon them. They chant pro-democracy slogans as they peacefully protest, and they even wave American flags and play the Star Spangled Banner. That’s the power a free America can have in the world.
The simple truth is, when you see the power of independence and freedom, you can’t help but want it for yourself. In just the last few weeks, protestors in Moscow, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Kashmir and elsewhere have put their personal safety on the line to march against dictators and oppressive actions. It’s the exact same kind of courage that has defined America’s history, from our foundation to the civil rights movement to today. Through successes and failures, it’s been our commitment to democracy and liberty that has driven us to be the best, freest nation on Earth.
And when we commit to that fight at home, we help others around the world to realize their own inherent dignity and liberty. They see that it is possible to be free and be secure, and they start to demand it for themselves. That is how the light of liberty spreads, by being nurtured first in the US and other free societies.
Our fight for America’s democratic republic is essential to our national welfare. But it’s also much bigger than us. When we stand up here, we show others a world away that the fight is worth having, and it can be won. America could have no greater legacy than the inspiration of liberty the world over. In turn, we should look to protestors in Hong Kong, Moscow and elsewhere as a source of inspiration for us, and redouble our commitment to freedom in their honor. That is our calling as the inheritors of the blessings of freedom won by generations that have come before us.
Stand Up Republic is committed to building a cross-partisan coalition of patriotic Americans dedicated to liberty, truth and equality. But while our efforts are most commonly focused on educating and mobilizing Americans to improve and defend our democracy, we also get involved in elections, when a candidate is clearly unfit for office. Our previous campaign efforts have included opposition to Roy Moore, Steve King, and Devin Nunes. The bar for SUR to engage in elections is very high, and always in opposition to candidates who do not meet the high standards we should hold for elected officials.
Dan Bishop has more than met that bar, building a career on extreme, divisive politics, and using his power to protect his party and serve himself. Here are the facts about Dan Bishop.
1: He authored the infamous and failed bathroom bill, which embarrassed North Carolina, had to be repealed, and is still costing the state billions of dollars in economic damage.
2: He is a proud investor in the extremist social media website “Gab.” Just days after neo-Nazis marched in Charlottesville and killed a young woman, Bishop read about Gab, a website that welcomed those white supremacists and gave a platform to their hate. So he opened his wallet and invested in that site. He helped build the site which the Pittsburgh shooter would later use to announce his murder spree at a synagogue, and on which mass murderers like the El Paso shooter are celebrated. He’s never apologized for his investment, and in fact, when we ran our ad about it, he threatened to sue us. So much for Dan Bishop’s belief in free speech.
3: When Bishop’s party leaders were caught turning a blind eye to their old candidate’s, Dan Bishop failed to hold them accountable. Instead, he changed the rules so that he could run in a redo election. As a Vice Chairman of the Senate’s committee responsible for elections, Dan Bishop should’ve been far more concerned with ballot fraud. Sadly, he just didn’t seem that worried when it was HIS party committing fraud. And when they got caught, he worked with them to change the rules so that he could run in a new election.
By enabling his party’s fraud and supporting neo-Nazi and white supremacist platform, Dan Bishop has proven that he is not fit for office. North Carolinians deserve better, and they should unite against Bishop’s divisive and dishonest candidacy.
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This week, the Trump administration placed further restrictions on legal immigration into the United States, enacting a new rule that would determine green card recipients based on a wealth test. Those who do not pass this aggressive assessment will be denied permanent legal status.
This week, a senior immigration official in the Trump administration suggested that the words on the Statue of Liberty – “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. To spread the light of liberty world-wide for every land” – should be revised, making clear that the administration wants to fundamentally rewrite our values.
But the engraving on the Statue of Liberty does not specify from where a person should come, or how much money they should have, just that they will be welcomed in the new world.
Immigrants who choose to come to the United States do so because we are the land of opportunity. Revolutionaries in oppressive regimes sing our national anthem because of what it represents: a free nation where all are created equal.
Though Trump and his nativist cronies are trying to redefine our ideals through their xenophobic statements and bigotted policies, Americans do not separate themselves from each other, we unite. We stand against the hatred, we demand change. Our fundamental principles will not be erased or redefined by the racist whims of this administration.
Words matter. They have immense power to bring a person to the extremes. But they also can bring people together. Together we are more powerful than the voices of fear and hate. That is why they seek to divide us, and that is why we must work harder to come together. Our commitment to liberty, equality, and truth is what powers us to thrive. It’s why the downtrodden across the world have looked to our example for inspiration. It is the purpose that drives us ever onward, towards a more perfect union.
We are a proud multicultural, inclusive nation and those principles are what define us. As long as we continue to stand up for our values and against hatred, America will continue to be seen as the strongest democracy in the world, and a place that we all feel proud to call home.
The shooting in El Paso this weekend is a horrific reminder of the growing threat which white supremacy and other related ideologies pose to America. For many Americans, these hate-filled beliefs seemed almost unheard of – a relic of bygone bigotry which America had largely moved past. But we cannot ignore the truth that white supremacy is alive, and driving some Americans to radical, violent ends.
If we don’t identify white supremacy as a source of domestic terrorism, it will fester, spread, and tear at the fabric of our society.
There are people in America who believe that a war between races is either ongoing, or is necessary to protect their own race. They believe they are superior to any other race, and that they must secure a nation for themselves, killing or expelling any other race or ethnicity from their land.
It is more than unbridled hate, it’s an ideology which cannot coexist with a free, pluralistic society. In short, they cannot accept or tolerate the dream of an America built and strengthened by people of every race, creed, gender or background.
This doctrine is of course nothing new. It has existed in America throughout our history, at times even as a predominant belief. But as our society has grown to recognize the evil of racism and bigotry, we weakened white supremacy as a force in our nation. And those who clung to it were driven to the shadows and fringes.
Today, white supremacy is experiencing a resurgence. They’ve built communities online to recruit new supremacists and to share their hate. But their hate doesn’t stay online. As white supremacists become radicalized they take their vitriol and rage to our homes and our communities. They murder to inspire fear and spread their message. That is what makes it terrorism.
And that is why we need to recognize it as such. If we have any hope to defeat this ideology, and prevent future attacks, we must acknowledge that this is not random violence nor mental illness. This is strategic, and we need a strategic response.
But rather than approach white supremacy – and it’s more socially accepted facade, white nationalism – as an organized threat, some politicians recite their rhetoric, stoke their fears and fuel their anger.
A leader who wants to end the threat of white supremacy wouldn’t blame video games, the internet, the media, or immigration. A leader who is serious about combating racist terrorism wouldn’t laugh when a supporter suggests shooting immigrants. A leader committed to the safety and unity of all Americans would confront the problem by name – white supremacy – and condemn all who embrace it, rather than sharing the words of the more mainstream proponents of hate.
That’s what America needs from its leaders now. That’s how we will confront and defeat radical, violent ideologies.
There is, and will continue to be, much debate about guns, mental health, and mass violence in general, but we cannot ignore the tide of white supremacism which underpins many of these violent attacks. If we don’t call it by name, identify it directly, and confront it bravely, we will not defeat this evil. And if we cannot uphold our commitment to liberty and justice for all if we will not relegate white supremacy to the ash heap of history.
White supremacy is on the rise in America–from an alarming online presence on sites like 8chan and Gab to gatherings at Charlottesville and other neo-Nazi rallies to outright violence. The FBI currently lists hate crimes as “the highest priority” of its U.S. Civil Rights arm. In only 8 years, 175 people have been killed in explicit, high-profile white supremacist attacks. On Saturday, white supremacy claimed the lives of 22 individuals at an El Paso Walmart, one of the safest towns in the country.The GOP has turned a blind eye to the white supremacist undercurrents in its base for too long. Too many of our representatives are writing off the El Paso shooting as yet another untraceable act of senseless violence by a disaffected American, blaming anything from mental illness to video games. However, a few have named and condemned the El Paso shooting for what it truly was.SUR has compiled a list of these responsible Republican leaders, state and federal level alike, below. The statements are ordered chronologically by the statement’s proximity to the shooting. Check back for regular updates:
White supremacy is on the rise in America–from an alarming online presence on sites like 8chan and Gab to gathering sat Charlottesville and other neo-Nazi rallies to outright violence. The FBI currently lists hate crimes as “the highest priority” of its U.S. Civil Rights arm. In only 8 years, 175 people have been killed in explicit, high-profile white supremacist attacks. On Saturday, white supremacy claimed the lives of 22 individuals at an El Paso Walmart, one of the safest towns in the country.
George P. Bush, 8/3/19 9:55 PM Texas Land Commissioner
Asa Hutchinson, 8/4/19 9:32 AMArkansas Governor
As a federal prosecutor I saw the evil of white supremacy. Its influence diminished but now we see a resurgence. In El Paso, there are two stories: the evil of the shooter & the love & help of the city. America must embrace El Paso’s compassion & collectively rebuke this evil.
Ted Cruz, 8/4/19 1:53 PMUnited States Senator, Texas
We must speak clearly to combat evil in any form it takes. What we saw yesterday was a heinous act of terrorism and white supremacy. There is no place for this in El Paso, in Texas, or anywhere across our nation.
We are all Americans and we are all standing united with El Paso.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 4, 2019
Dan Crenshaw, 8/4/19 2:03 PMUnited States Congressman, Texas-02
White supremacy has no place in this world. Violence inflicted because of someone’s race or ethnicity is vile, repulsive, and one of the worst evils we face. It must end.
Will Hurd, 8/4/19 10:30 AMUnited States Congressman, Texas-23
This El Paso shooting was an act of terrorism based on hate. I joined my colleagues to pass a background check bill to prevent guns from getting in the wrong hands, but civil society also can help. If you see something on social media, send a screenshot to local law enforcement. pic.twitter.com/JySiBfttEg
Jim Banks, 8/4/19 11:09 AM United States Congressman, Indiana-03
I deployed to Afghanistan as a response to radical Islamic terrorism. We now face a different enemy that has also emerged from the shadows but demands the same focus and determination to root out and destroy. #WhiteSupremacistTerrorism should be named, targeted and defeated.
Rob Portman, 8/4/19 5:30 PMUnited States Senator, Ohio
We’re also thinking about everyone in El Paso, where a horrific domestic terrorist attack happened yesterday. As I’ve said many times, there is no place in America for hatred, bigotry or white nationalism.
White nationalism is domestic terrorism and has no place in America. It is fundamentally against all that we have worked for, antithetical to the American creed, and is a stain on our national identity.
John Curtis, 8/5/19 3:18
United States Congressman, Utah-03
We should all feel emboldened to condemn extremism within our own borders, to call out hate, and to take on the insidious influence of white supremacy with the same fervor we attack all other forms of terrorism. #utpol
Darin LaHood, 8/5/19 7:32 pm
United States Congressman, Illinois-18
White nationalism, racism, and bigotry have no place in our country and we must stand united against this hate following the acts of terror in El Paso and Dayton. The individual responsible for the terror in El Paso should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
The Mueller Report, Mueller’s testimony before Congress, the intelligence community, and the Senate’s own report have come to the same conclusion: Our elections are vulnerable and the Russian government, along with other adversaries, is working to interfere in our democracy again in 2020.
Former Special Counsel Mueller was asked, point blank, if the Kremlin’s interference was a one time occurrence, his response? “It wasn’t a single attempt, they’re doing it as we sit here, and they expect to do it during the next campaign.”
And yet, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell continues to block election security bills from reaching the Senate Floor, we can’t let that stand.
Call McConnell’s office: (202) 224-2541, and demand that he allow a vote on election security bills:
Hi, this is [your name], I’m calling because I am concerned about election interference. I know there are multiple bills in the Senate right now that seek to address election security and I am urging Senator McConnell to allow these bills to go to the Senate Floor.
Russia and other foreign adversaries continue to attack our elections and Leader McConnell is enabling these attacks on our democracy.
Americans deserve elections free from foreign interference and Leader McConnell has a responsibility to restore public confidence in our election results.
I would like to request a formal response from Senator McConnell’s office on this topic and can give you my information whenever you’re ready.