Biden to Sign Executive Orders for His Racial Equity Agenda. So Can We Still Talk About the Crime Bill or Nah?

Illustration for article titled Biden to Sign Executive Orders for His Racial Equity Agenda. So Can We Still Talk About the Crime Bill or Nah?
Photo: Drew Angerer (Getty Images)

In 1993, Joe Biden took to the Senate floor to warn of predators in society that needed to be taken out.

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“We have predators on our streets that society has in fact, in part because of its neglect, created,” Biden said. “They are beyond the pale many of those people, beyond the pale,” Biden continued. “And it’s a sad commentary on society. We have no choice but to take them out of society.”

In 1994, Joe Biden helped craft the federal crime bill, which would lead to the mass incarceration of Black folks. We can argue all day about whether the crime bill, which would become the first federal “three strikes” law, disproportionately targeted toward Black folks. Hell, we can even argue if it led to the mass incarceration of Black folks, but it did and I’m right.

In the following years, Biden would support and vote for laws that would spend billions in funding for state prisons and he “was also a longtime proponent of a Police Officer’s Bill of Rights measure while serving as a senator, which critics have said would have made investigating police officers for misconduct more difficult,” CNN reports.

But why keep talking about the past, amirite? Today is a new day and Biden has done the hard work of helping Americans forget who he used to be. So, let’s celebrate the new Biden, whose pen is on go mode and who can’t stop signing shit.

On Tuesday, President Joe Biden is slated to sign a series of executive actions around “equity” that will focus on “policing reform, prison reform and public housing,” according to CNN.

“America has never lived up to its founding promise of equality for all, but we’ve never stopped trying. Today, I’ll take action to advance racial equity and push us closer to that more perfect union we’ve always strived to be,” the president tweeted on Tuesday morning.

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“The president will issue an executive order that will create a policing commission, something he promised he’d create if elected to office,” CNN reports.

From CNN:

Another order Biden will sign will reinstate an Obama-era policy barring the transfer of military equipment to local police departments. The order signed in 2015 prevented federal agencies from supplying local police with certain kinds of military-grade equipment, like grenade launchers and bayonets. That order came in the wake of criticism of a “militarized” police response to civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, over the death of Michael Brown — an unarmed Black teenager fatally shot by a police officer. Trump lifted the equipment ban in 2017.

The President will also seek to improve prison conditions and eliminate the use of private prisons. Biden had campaigned on eliminating the federal government’s use of private prisons.

Biden will also issue an order disavowing discrimination against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, which, the document says, comes “particularly in light of rhetoric around the Covid-19 pandemic.” He will issue a memorandum directing Housing and Urban Development to take steps to promote equitable housing politics.

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Even Biden knows and admitted that he fucked up.

“You know I’ve been in this fight for a long time. It goes not just to voting rights. It goes to the criminal justice system,” Biden said on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 2019, CNN reports. “I haven’t always been right. I know we haven’t always gotten things right, but I’ve always tried.”

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See, why can’t y’all stop talking about the crime bill and just be happy?

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.

DISCUSSION

jd02121
Nunna Yorz - American Justice Is A Joke

“See, why can’t y’all stop talking about the crime bill and just be happy?”

“Why ya’ll keep bringing up old shit?” - Liberals

“Black people wanted the crime bill at the time.” “Nobody’s done more for black people than I have.” - Biden

We keep talking about it because we’re still feeling the negative results from it to this day. It grew the prison industrial complex to the biggest system of any country, and bolstered state sanctioned oppression. It was the mindset that led to Stop and Frisk etc.

We keep talking about it because its offensive for the author of that bill, who was notably to the right of Republicans at the time, to also angrily tell a group of concerned black people who voted for him that no one has done more for black people than he has. It’s not too late to do something about that, but the fact that the same people who exacerbated the problem are now the ones claiming to want to make things better doesn’t make me very hopeful.

It’s like being in an abusive relationship and the abuser tells you that they didn’t mean all of the hurtful shit, and they can do better if you just give them a 92,483,658,734th chance.