tv U.S. Conference of Mayors Discuss Gun Violence Hate Crimes Part 2 CSPAN February 12, 2019 5:37am-6:40am EST
whose seat would later be filled by future ohio governor and presidential candidate john kasich. congressman michael guest was a local prosecutor in mississippi for nearly 25 years. the last decade as district attorney before his election to the house. he is also a sunday school teacher at his local baptist church. representative david cohen and his brother opened a small liquor store in delaware in the early 1990s. the company eventually moved its headquarters to maryland brand has expanded to become the largest independent fine wine retailer in the country. washington's eighth district elected representative kim schrier, a pediatrician, and the only female doctor in congress. new congress, new leaders. watch it all on c-span.
mares and advocates for gun control talk about gun violence and hate crimes in their cities. this portion features the mayors of annapolis, maryland, parkland, florida, charleston, south carolina, and pittsburgh, pennsylvania, as they share stories and recommended solutions. part of a recent meeting of the u.s. conference of mayors. >> good morning, everyone. my name is karen freeman wilson, and i am honored to serve as the chair of the criminal and social justice committee for the conference of mayors and i have the distinct privilege of leading this session on a very important topic, a very grave topic. earlier, we just had an excellent discussion in the plan in your area on what mayors can do to build inclusive and compassionate cities, and the conference center's, the conference intentions -- intentional
action on helping us to do that. in this session, we are going to discuss a key factor in ensuring that not only are our cities inclusive, but that we protect our residents against those who do not value them for particular traits they possess. not only that we protect them against, but that we send a message that we do not tolerate of the ill-treatment of people based on gender, sex, race, religion, and any other driver of hate crimes. for many years, the conference of mayors has had a strong policy condemning hate crimes and urging mayors to speak out against them whenever they occur, and to ensure that there
is reporting at the local level, as well as to the fbi. so today, we're going to begin with a briefing on the increase in hate crimes that we are seeing across the country by the anti-defamation league, and in the person of their counsel, michael lieberman, who has been to this meeting before, who has presented at our meeting before, and who has been working hand-in-hand with the conference on these issues. the adl has also been a great partner with the conference of mayors and of course, the partnership was strengthened with our joint development of a compact to combat hate, extremism, and bigotry, which was signed by 325 mayors
shortly after charlotte. i want to acknowledge, even though mister lieberman will do the presenting that jonathan greenblatt, who is the adl's national director and ceo is present. mister greenblatt? i knew he said he had to catch a flight. so he is going to catch a flight. then we will hereafter michael from mayor bill peduto, who will discuss his city's response to the deadliest act of imprisonment is him to ever occur in our country. the mass shooting up the tree of life synagogue in october, and i want to commend all of you and your cities, who came together in unity with the
folks at the tree of life and in the city of gary, we had a unity celebration at our synagogue, temple bethel. i just want to commend so many mayors, and councilmembers who did the same thing. we will then hear from our colleague, and actually i think bloomberg classmate mayor andy burke, who will discuss the mayor's counsel against hate, which he has established in his city, and then our cleanup hitter is our friend chief tom manger, who is the police chief in montgomery county, maryland, and the immediate past president of a major city's chiefs association, and a close working partner as the mayor's and police chiefs convene to work on issues like these together.
before we hear from our speakers, i want to go around the room very quickly, and ask all of the mayors present to introduce themselves, and we will start with mayor peditto. >> i am bill peduto, the mayor of pittsburgh. >> mayor joseph, san jacinto, california. >> mayor kim norton, rochester, minnesota. >> aloha, mayor caldwell
from honolulu. >> mayor dion rockingham of north chicago, illinois. >> don hamilton, bloomington, indiana. >> john mecklenburg -- south carolina. >> nancy vaughn, greensboro, north carolina. >> mike myers, greenwood, indiana. >> ted wheeler, mayor of portland, oregon.
>> lane davis, mayor of santa monica, california. >> robert store, mayor of the san francisco bay area. >> kristin mccone, mayor of the all-america city, desoto, texas. >> sean riley, mayor of waukesha, wisconsin. >> sherine west in mayor of baton rouge, louisiana. >> rick christman, st. petersburg, florida.
>> sylvester turner, mayor of houston. >> sale gomez, florida. >> stephen clobert is next liqueur mayor of hillsborough, oregon. >> yvonne spicer, mayor of framingham, massachusetts. >> andy burke, member mayor of chattanooga, tennessee.
>> thank you again. before i turn it over to mister lieberman, i want to advise everyone that we are live on c- span and i want to thank our director, who is present today, mister field keys for his support, his leadership, and for always being a partner to the conference of mayors, and of course the cities that we serve. mister lieberman? >> thanks, mayor. good morning. i still have a few moments left of the morning. it's an incredibly important time for this panel. it's an incredibly polarized time in our country. there are many communities in our cities that are feeling isolated, vulnerable, alone, and there is much we can do to box him up. the u.s. conference of mayors has been a leader on this issue
for 30 years. i want to give a shout out to laura, waxman, who has done extraordinary work, leading this work. they've been a great partner to the anti-defamation league on supporting improved data collection, on training programs, on legislation, like the matthew shepard, james byrd junior hate crimes prevention act, which passed now almost 10 years ago. i have five minutes. i want to make 3 points. first, data drives policy. you cannot address what you cannot measure. the anti-defamation league has been doing an audit of anti- semitic incidents in america since 1979. we have 25 regional offices in many of the cities that are represented here. the 2017 audit documented almost 2000 anti-semitic incidents, a 57% increase over 2016. it was the largest single year increase ever.
the best national data comes from the fbi. that was passed in 1990, the hate crimes statistics act, collecting data from 18,000 police departments around the country. in 2017, the most recent data, there were almost 7200 hate crimes reported from about 16,000 police departments around the country. a 17% increase over 2016. there was an 18% increase in race-based hate crimes, a 16% increase in crimes against african-americans, and african- americans have always been, since 1990, the plurality of all the hate crimes reported to the fbi. a 20% increase in crimes against asian pacific americans, 63% increase in crimes against native americans, crimes against arab-americans doubled in 2017.
a 24% increase in crimes against latinos, and religion based crimes increased 23%, and crimes against jews increased 37%. crimes against jews have always been between 50% and 80% of the religion based crimes. you don't have to work for the anti-defamation league to be concerned about 2.4% of the population, and yet 50% to 80% of the religion based crimes against jews and jewish institutions. crimes against muslims in 2017, according to the fbi, actually decreased slightly, but still the third-largest numbers ever since 1990, and crimes based on sexual orientation increased 5%. the vast majority of hate crimes are not committed by organized hate groups, or members of hate groups, but some are. in fact,, some of the most high-
profile cases, we will hear from mayor peditto in a moment, the most deadly hate crime against jewish americans in american history, and the mayor of charleston is here, the mother manual church in 2015, where nine worshipers were killed by a white supremacist, and the two black grandparents killed in april the parking lot in jefferson town, kentucky outside of louisville. this is the report adl issued just this week. there is a link to it in your app, the u.s. conference of mayors app has a lot of resources i will be mentioning. this report came out this week. every single one of the 50 extremist martyrs in 2017 were committed by right-wing extremists. that has not been the case in the past but it was this year. third.
mayors are problem solvers. that's what you do. that's why you go to work in the morning. that's what gets you up to go to do your work. but we know we cannot outlaw hate, bigotry, anti-semitism, racism, no executive order you are going to be able to promulgate is going to end homophobia or any of these. i worked on the federal matthew shepard james byrd junior hate crimes prevention act for 13 years working in coalition with the u.s. conference of mayors, chief international association of chiefs of police, but i know and you know the law is a blunt instrument when it comes to addressing hate. it's much better to prevent it in the first place. this is why we are having this panel, at this time. this is a best practices panel. you are going to be hearing from the panelists about ideas. we are supposed to have a lot of ideas. we have a lot of ideas. after the white supremacist rally, street fights, murder in
charlottesville, the conference of mayors delivered a compact, the mayor's compact, also in your app. it's a 10 point plan. it's much, much more than just let's get along. let's all sing come by altogether. it includes using the bully pulpit to speak out against hate, finding anti-bias and bully prevention programs some money to be able to go forward in schools, training programs for police, and supporting community programs to celebrate cultural and ethnic diversity, like you will hear from the mayor of chattanooga, mayor berke, in a few moments about his counsel. inclusive and compassionate cities is a demonstration of the mayor's conference commitment. mayor benjamin and mayor fisher's involvement in ensures this will be a legacy involvement for the conference. that's great. every city should have a hate crime policy. if you go to the chattanooga website, you will find the hate
crime policy of chattanooga on the website. there are things you can do next week to demonstrate that you are resolved against hate crime and they are easy. they don't require funding. you have a policy, you can create a policy. international association of chiefs of police has a great model policy. it's in your app. you can just take the parts you like and make it your own. every city should train its officers to identify, report and respond to hate crimes. every city should collect and report state crime data both to the state repository and the fbi. in 2017, 92 cities, over 100,000 in population, either told the fbi that they had zero hate crimes or they did not report at all. that would be a really great figure if they knew it was true. i think there is reason to believe it's not true. chief manger files every year from the montgomery county police.
a montgomery county report on hate crimes, visibility, and transparency. it's a best practice, something to be applauded. finally,, you do not have to create these resources on your own. you do not have to reinvent the wheel. as i mentioned, every resource i mentioned, including some other ones, are in the app, and great resources from the fbi. i wish i could say we are going to solve this problem after this panel or even in advance of the 88 winter meeting, but we won't. therefore, implementation of the mayor's compact, inking about the ideas that will be presented, is really important. thank you for the commitment you have made to these issues. >> thank you so much mister lieberman. i hope you will check out those resources on the app. i am certainly looking forward to seeing that report. mayor bill, you and your city have been through quite a bit over the last year. please, share your response and
how you all are working through this. >> thanks, mayor. i can remember exactly where i was when i first heard it. it was with a sergeant and my chief of staff was in the backseat. we were going up the hill to mercy hospital to check on a couple of the officers who had been injured, and on the radio, they said it, and it was described as the deadliest act of anti-semitism in american history. asterisk pittsburgh. you never think about that. when you are a mayor, thinking about your city, your city will go down in history for this. and it would never happen and tree of life because it's literally mister rogers neighborhood where fred rogers lived, two blocks away, where
willie stargel, we are family, lived. the most diverse neighborhood in all of western pennsylvania. people choose to live in squirrel hill because they want to live around people who are different. they embrace that. it's my neighborhood. i live seven blocks away. those words hit like somebody punching you in the stomach, taking the wind right out of you. everything you thought about your city has completely changed forever. of course, pittsburgh being the city that it is, the victims themselves were friends. they were family members of friends that you've known for 20 years. you get to go through this process of trying to operate and act rationally at a time when the emotions really are taking over, and it becomes difficult, you know? you hear about the stories of how the first officer arrived,
and upon coming out of his vehicle, walking in front of the car, looking in through the glass windows that are tinted at tree of life, and seeing the shadow behind there. a person, holding an assault rifle aimed right at him, and throwing up his hand as the bullet went through it. going back behind the car, and realizing only hours later that he was on his way back into the car where he had other weapons and more ammunition in order to be able to go to another synagogue. it's about the officers running in, not really sure where he was, and the rabbi hiding in a closet. all of those stories start to add on and add on. you start to understand that what you're dealing with is the highest level of evil, that there is an evil when a life is taken. there is extra evil when it is
at a whole different level, those that can't help themselves, whether it's two brothers who are 54 years old, who have special needs, or a 97- year-old grandmother. there is a different level of evil that occurs when it occurs because of the way someone prays. simply because of the way that they pray and what their religion is. and then there's an entirely different level of evil when it occurs at sanctuary, at the place where you are safe. and then you start realizing that you are dealing with a heavier level of evil, when hate crimes happen. but let me tell you this, and it was very apparent very early on, that in that darkness of evil, there is light. you will see that light. i saw it before 12:00 noon.
10:00 a.m., i get the call, at 10:00 i am on the site before members of the s.w.a.t. team arrive. we are standing at the outside corner, with rain falling on us, a cold morning and by 11:00, we have the person, and we're taking him to the hospital. i look around the corner, around that same time, and i see my friend was a mohammed, executive director of the islamic center of pittsburgh. but it wasn't just him standing at the corner. it was the entire board of the islamic center of pittsburgh. because they have their meetings on saturday mornings, and as soon as they heard, they got in their cars, and they went directly to the synagogue. i said why are you here? he said because we need to be here. it was the monday afterwards, and i was taking police officers to the different schools, so that the kids who
were in those schools, whether it was the community day school or where, would understand the police were there to protect them. they didn't have to be afraid because there was a police officer there. the officers themselves, engaging with the kids, sharing their first names, asking how many kids want to be police officers. as we walked out of the school, a minivan drives by and it stops. it starts backing up and my sergeant gets out of the car, concerned that somebody wants to cause harm, and a young guy, probably seventh or eighth grade comes running out of the car with a glass vase of flowers in it, and he says this is for you. i said what's this for? he said because you are my neighbor, and i love you. and i said hold on a minute, and i walked up to the car, and i look in the front seat for his mom is sitting. the entire front seat is filled with glass vases, with flowers
they are handing out to people, all-around tree of life. it happened the next day on tuesday, when the protests came, when president trump came to visit, and the protest was thousands of people who have marched for many different issues, who have marched against violence, against youth by police, social justice. as they passed zone four, the pittsburgh police station, they stopped, and they clapped. and they said thank you. the police came out, and they hugged, and they saw each other. why was that able to happen? sure, it was in the evil that people wanted to be good, but it was 10 years of building the interfaith dialogue in pittsburgh. 10 years of jews and muslims, and christians working together. 10 years of getting to know each other, and then becoming
friends. it was a mother who taught her son the greatest lesson. taking him out in that van, and being able to pass out those flowers, and letting him know that the worst time and the most evil is a time when you can do good that will make you feel better, too that you are going to be helping that person who is unable to deal with that situation. and it was a continual beat of police and community, over years and years of interaction, that allowed people to put themselves in those officers' place and let them know after the most dramatic day of their work, that we got your back, this time. i stood, two weeks later as the community gathered. we followed jewish law. we allowed for the proper time period after the last funeral before gathering as a
community, and we gathered up the point of pittsburgh, where the rivers come together, and we stood there along with people like mrs. rogers and franco harris, and all the luminaries within pittsburgh. a young minister came up to me and told me this: she said it was 80 years ago today the kristallnacht happened. it was 80 years ago today that people burned down synagogues in czechoslovakia, germany, and austria while the police looked the other way. in pittsburgh, they ran into the buildings with bullets flying at them. it was 80 years ago today the jews were killed and politicians turned their backs. in pittsburgh today, we stand shoulder to shoulder, democrat and republican, to say never again. it was 80 years ago today, the community leaders allowed the holocaust to begin. in pittsburgh today, we stand as one to make sure that we
follow what we believe to be the right way. we can defeat hate. i loved our expression stronger than hate, and showing the steelers symbol with the star of david, and it said something about not only pittsburgh, but the response that came from around the world. it was more than just stronger than hate. we were saying an attack against one is an attack against all. >> [ applause ] >> thank you, mayor bill. earlier today, in another session, you talked about a club that nobody wants to be in.
mayor burke is a member of that club, the club where there has been mass shootings. i just want to commend mayor burke, too, on his leadership, and his response, and would you please respect share that with us now? >> thank you, mayor. andris manuel lspez obrador to both of y'all. thanks, bill for your incredible leadership. this is a club that many of us unfortunately now, either are part of or think about being part of. in june 2015, i was watching tv, when one of my heroes, joe riley, was on there, describing what had happened in charleston, at mother emmanuel, and i thought to myself, what must he be going through? how bad must that be?
well, about six weeks later, i was in a press conference, announcing some good economic development news, when my chief of staff came up to the podium and gave me a sheet of paper. on it, it said active shooter at a military facility. officer down. so i ended the press conference, walked out, started trying to assess what had happened, and a shooter had been radicalized as a terrorist had killed four marines and a sailor in our city. had been to two facilities and had been to a facility where he shot a recruiter for our armed forces, and had been taken down by one of our officers who had walked into their to take care of the problem.
this was a huge incident in our community, where we are a patriotic city. we value our connections to the military and we just had five people gunned down in chattanooga, tennessee. so one of the first things i did was i took out our whiteboard, gathered everybody around, and started writing down the rules of the road. this is how we are going to respond to this incident. our police chief, who did an amazing job, we sat down and started going through what are we going to say. the first thing we said is we are going to protect every single person. it was a muslim young man who killed these five heroes. and we know that part of what we have to do is keep our muslim communities safe over these next few days. we also set another rule we put down was no one will be
radicalized as a result of this incident, not one person as a result of what happened here today. and so, this started us down the road of figuring out how we combat violent extremism in our city, and around our country. the young man who perpetrated these horrific acts, he grew up in chattanooga. his father actually works for city government, still works for city government today. just to show you how interconnected all this is, and i say this almost everywhere, he was not radicalized in chattanooga, but he came back to chattanooga to commit these acts, which means we are all in this together in a really critical way. so after we had done a lot of work, and we had a great response, a lot of articles were written about chattanooga,
and our response afterward, we were contacted by the state department, and mike duffin is here with the u.s. state department. secretary kerry had started the strong cities network. it's all about how you combat violent extremism and try to prevent these acts from occurring. i started talking to other cities. they arranged that not just in the u.s., but all around the world. we had numerous visitors from places from the balkan areas to the far east. we have had tons of people and tried to learn what was happening. discounter violence extremism work is actually really important. there are people on the edges of our city, everywhere. sometimes, they turn to violence in ways that we see every day, and sometimes they turn to violent extremism as a result. we have to reach out to them. many of you do incredible work at reaching out to these young
men and women. we know it's mostly men because we are worried they are going to join some kind of group where they perpetrate violence in our city. another thing they can do is get radicalized and commit some horrific act of terrorism. as part of that, we started talking about an international group of mayors through the strong cities network. to combat hate, and i thought why am i talking to a bunch of international news about what to do all across the world and we are not doing this in our city? so, i set up state of the city and i said we are going to form a council against hate. something like that can sound hokey. counsel against hate. what i found was people were hungry for this, particularly
in are religious community. they see this. they feel it. they were dying to participate in something like this. i would gather community leaders and we started working. our first piece was to reach out to the anti-defamation league. they came in and did a session with us. we are gathering information and our work is ongoing so i want to say to everybody, first of all, think about getting involved in the strong cities network. mike is here so if you feel the need, he can take your name. second of all, there is a hunger for talking about hate. people see it on their phones. they feel it in their lives. they watch it from our highest leaders in our country, and it is time for all of us to step up and say this because not one person should be radicalized in