Atlanta shooting hearing – live: Grace Meng gives tearful testimony as Chip Roy ‘glorifies lynching’

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Eight dead after Georgia massage parlour shootings

The House Judiciary Committee is hearing from Asian American leaders and activists about the rise in discrimination and violence against their communities since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

Advocates have blamed former president Donald Trump for stoking discrimination against Asian Americans with his inflammatory rhetoric while in office.

The hearing comes just days after the shooting spree that claimed the lives of eight people at three spas in the Atlanta area — six of them Asian women.

Lawmakers joined experts on hate crimes in giving testimony. The actor Daniel Dae Kim, known for roles on Lost and Hawai Five-O, also appeared. Mr Kim has been outspoken about the problem of violence against Asian Americans.

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Ted Lieu slams Roy over lynching comments

Rep Ted Lieu: “I served on active duty in the US military to defend [Chip Roy’s] right to say stupid, racist stuff. I just wish he would stop saying it.”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:56

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Police reveal 911 calls from Atlanta shooting

The Atlanta Police Department has released the audio from two 911 calls made during the massage spa shootings that left eight people dead and one man injured.

The first 911 call was made at 5:45pm from Gold Spa, which was the second establishment Robert Aaron Long, 21, attacked Tuesday evening.

During the phone call, a woman can be heard saying “need police” in a hushed tone, and said she believed a robbery was underway.

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:39

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Schumer: ‘Despicable’ violence against Asian Americans on rise

Meanwhile in the Senate, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says of the Atlanta shootings: “There is no doubt that abuse, prejudice and violence against Asian Americans is on the rise, and it so un-American, and so despicable.”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:35

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Raskin calls invocation of free speech bizarre

Rep. Jamie Raskin: “The bizarre invocation of free speech in this context is a dangerous and irrelevant distraction from the violence engulfing AAPI communities… We’ve got [Asian American] constituents who have been attacked by racist fanatics, screaming about the Wu Han flu.”

He asks John Yang of AAJC about Republicans’ concerns about free speech. Mr Yang says leaders have an “obligation to model behavior that we want our community to follow” instead of trying to be divisive.

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:27

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Rep Ted Lieu appealed to Republican lawmakers to stop using derisive terms for the coronavirus — “I am not a virus.”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:20

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NYPD increases patrols in Asian communities

The New York Police Department has deployed officers to Asian communities around the city after eight people, many of them women of Asian descent, were killed in shootings at three massage parlours in Atlanta.

Members of the NYPD critical response command have been deployed to Asian communities throughout the city in response to the shootings, the department told Fox News.

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:20

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“What happens right now and over the course of the coming months will send a message for generations to come as to whether we matter, whether the country we call home chooses to erase or include us, dismiss us or respect us, invisibilise us or see us.”

“You may consider us statistically insignificant now, but one more fact that has no alternative is that we are the fastest-growing demographic in the country, we are 23 million strong. We are united. And we are waking up.”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 16:05

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“I’m not naive enough to think that I’m going to convince all of you to stand up for us. Trust me, I’ve seen your voting records. But I am speaking to those to whom humanity still matters.”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 15:58

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Actor Daniel Dae Kim asks why GOP couldn’t support a bill condemning Asian hate

Actor Daniel Dae Kim is now speaking and began by talking about the Republican members who opposed Rep Grace Meng’s bill condemning anti-Asian hate: “I wonder, will the 164 members of the House who refused to acknowledge us last fall, do so again, canceling the humanity of an entire community of Americans?”

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 15:57

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White House orders flags to half staff for Atlanta victims

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

As a mark of respect for the victims of the senseless acts of violence perpetrated on March 16, 2021, in the Atlanta Metropolitan area, by the authority vested in me as President of the United States by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby order that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions until sunset, March 22, 2021.  I also direct that the flag shall be flown at half-staff for the same length of time at all United States embassies, legations, consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this eighteenth day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.

Oliver O’Connell18 March 2021 15:53

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