At a congressional hearing on violence against Asian Americans, Rep. Chip Roy drew strong condemnation from colleagues for comments that appeared to glorify lynchings, and then later for claiming the hearing was primarily about policing rhetoric.
The House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties had convened a hearing to discuss discrimination against Asian Americans. The hearing occurred less than two days after a shooter killed eight people in the Atlanta area by targeting Asian American salons and spas.
At the hearing, Roy appeared to question the hearing’s intentions, mentioning several times that he felt it was veering into “policing rhetoric of a free society.” He also appeared to reminisce about lynchings at one point. “There’s old sayings in Texas about find all the rope in Texas and get a tall oak tree. You know, we take justice very seriously, & we ought to do that. Round up the bad guys.”
Several people, including Rep. Ted Lieu, picked up on his comments and the descriptions of lynchings. Lieu also noted that the largest mass lynching in history was against Chinese-Americans.
During the hearing, Rep. Grace Meng, who was a testifying witness, criticized Roy for his comments. “Your president, and your party, and your colleagues can talk about issues with any other country that you want. But you don’t have to do it by putting a bull’s eye on the back of Asian Americans across this country, on our grandparents, on our kids,” said Meng.In a statement to Mediaite, Roy did not apologize or walk back any of his comments. He ended by writing “No apologies.”
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