Racial Justice Supporters Condemn White Supremacy Protection Act Hate Rally in Concord (HB 544 & State Budget)
CONCORD, NH – Today Rep. Keith Ammon (R-Free State) and Rep. Daryl Abbas (R-Salem) gathered with hate activists for a so-called Rally Against Anti-Racism at the State House in support of the White Supremacy Protection Act (also known as HB 544) in the state’s budget. Statements from members of the coalition in opposition to the bill language below.
Grace Kindeke, Program Coordinator, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC):
“It is an embarrassing waste of time and taxpayer resources that our lawmakers continue their attempts to censor the mere mention of systemic racism and sexism when we are confronted daily with the extrajudicial murders of Black and Brown people and the devastating effects of the COVID pandemic on Black and Brown communities. While many New Hampshire communities get on with the business of working to end the systemic subordination of our communities and build a more inclusive Granite State, lawmakers continue their campaign to censor and obfuscate these truths. Public discourse and decision making is strengthened by critical analysis that challenges us to recognize and repair the barriers embedded in the policies and practices of the institutions that impact our communities. To reduce systemic racism and systemic sexism solely to the individual and interpersonal is a tactic meant to distort and deny the very real disparities experienced by people of color, disabled people, women and gender non-conforming folks. Systemic racism and sexism are divisive because of the harm they cause, not because they are uncomfortable to talk about. Our willingness to examine and discuss our history and institutional responsibilities enables us to fully realize the promises of a true multicultural and multiracial democracy. We are a state willing to have the hard conversations in order to ensure that every person regardless of race or gender has the resources they need to flourish and thrive.”
Cora Quisumbing-King and Sumathi Madhure, Co-Chairs of the NH AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) Democrats:
“The NH AAPI Democrats strongly oppose the language contained in HB 544 and the state budget, which would restrict education on measures to end racism and sexism endured by Granite Staters. The history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders has been largely untaught in school classrooms. This lack of education has created systemic barriers to the cultural acceptance of our communities. Our communities will undoubtedly be harmed by this dangerous and unpopular language.”
Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director, Granite State Progress:
“Those pushing this bill language are seeking to block anti-racism work and other efforts to build a safe, healthy, and equitable New Hampshire. Particularly now, after a year of reckoning and sustained mobilization around racial injustice, and as the COVID-19 public health pandemic lays bare the disproportionate health and economic impacts on people of color and women, this bill creates more hurdles to adequately responding. The passage of this language is a direct result of the failure of Chris Sununu and his Republican majorities in the State House to hold members accountable for spouting racist, antisemitic, and violent messages. It’s a damning indictment of the necessity of anti-racism education that State Representatives currently in office have posted racist, anti-Semitic material and used ignorance as a self-defense. We must proactively educate people about harmful stereotypes, the history of racism and sexism, and its continued persistence in today’s society and institutions if we want to build a functioning multiracial democracy.”
Granite State Progress is a progressive advocacy organization that addresses issues of immediate state and local concern. Granite State Progress works as a communications hub for the progressive community to provide a strong, credible voice in advancing progressive solutions to critical community problems. Visit https://granitestateprogress.org/ to learn more.