Buffalo shooting: Biden, first lady to meet with families of victims in supermarket shooting | Watch speech today live

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden paid their respects Tuesday at a makeshift memorial service for the 10 people killed in the Buffalo attack on white supremacists, once again facing the forces of hatred who once said they had called him back to look for him. White House.

Just outside Air Force One, the first couple placed a bouquet of white flowers at the memorial with flowers, candles and messages of condolence outside the Tops supermarket, where on Saturday a young man armed with a gun targeted blacks in the deadliest racist attack. . in the US since Biden took office.

Biden met privately with victims’ families, top correspondents and local officials before the president made public remarks, in which he planned to call for tougher gun laws and urge Americans to reject racism and embrace racism. of the nation, the White House said.

It is a message that Biden has sent many times since he became the first president to specifically address white supremacy in an opening speech, calling it “domestic terrorism we must tackle.” However, such beliefs remain a well-established threat at a time when his government is focused on tackling pandemic, inflation and war in Ukraine.

Buffalo shooting victims include regular shoppers, retired police officer who saved lives during the attack

The White House said the president and the first lady “will mourn the community that lost 10 lives in an absurd and horrific mass shooting.” Three more people were injured. Almost all the victims were black, including all those who died.

On Monday, Biden paid a special tribute to one of the victims, retired police officer Aaron Salter, who worked as a security guard at the store. He said Salter “gave his life trying to save others” by opening fire on the gunman to kill himself.

Upon his arrival in Buffalo, the president and two New York senators welcomed Gov. Katie Hotsul, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, and local police and fire officials.

The perpetrator’s hateful writings echoed those of white supporters who marched in torch in 2017 in Charlottesville, Virginia, a scene that Biden said inspired his decision to run against President Donald Trump in 2020. which he calls “the battle for the soul of America.”

Retired cop who was confronted with a gun in the Buffalo shooting was hailed as a hero: “He came down fighting”

“It’s important for him to show his family and the community and express his condolences,” said Derrick Johnson, president of NAACP. “But we are more interested in this not happening in the future.”

It is unclear how Biden will try to do that. Proposals for new arms embargoes have often been blocked by Republicans, and racist rhetoric on the sidelines of the nation’s politics has only become stronger.

Payton Gendron, 18, was arrested at the supermarket and charged with murder. He has pleaded not guilty.

Prior to the shooting, Gendron allegedly posted a movie about racism and anti-Semitism on the Internet. The author of the document described himself as a supporter of Dylann Roof, who killed nine black parishioners in a church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015, and Brenton Tarrant, who targeted mosques in New Zealand in 2019.

Researchers are examining Gendron’s connection to what is known as the “big replacement” theory, which unjustifiably claims that whites are deliberately flooded by other races through immigration or higher birth rates.

The allegations are often linked to anti-Semitism, with Jews being identified as the culprits. During the “Join the Right” march in 2017 in Charlottesville, white defenders shouted “Jews will not replace us.”

What is white supremacy theory? Belief fuels racist attacks

“Many of these dark voices are still alive today,” said White House spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre on Monday. “And the president is as determined as he was then … to ensure that we fight back against these forces of hatred, evil and violence.”

In the years since Charlottesville, substitution theory has shifted from the internet margin to the dominant right-wing politics. One-third of U.S. adults believe there is “a group of people in this country trying to replace Native Americans with immigrants who agree with their political views,” according to a December poll by the Associated Press and NORC. Center. for Public Affairs Investigation.

Tucker Carlson, a prominent Fox News presenter, accuses Democrats of orchestrating mass immigration to consolidate their power.

“The country is being stolen by American citizens,” he said on August 23, 2021. He repeated the same thing a month later, saying that “this policy is called the great replacement, the replacement of inherited Americans with more obedient people from distant lands.”

Carlson’s show regularly receives the highest ratings on cable news, and responded to Monday night’s outrage by accusing the Liberals of trying to silence their opponents.

“So because a mentally ill teenager killed strangers, you can not be allowed to express your political beliefs out loud,” he said.

His comment reflects how this conspiratorial view on immigration has spread to the Republican Party in the run-up to this year’s midterm elections, which will determine control of Congress.

Facebook ads posted last year by lawmaker Eliz Stefanick, RN.Y. The plan would “overthrow our current electorate and create a permanent liberal majority in Washington.”

Alex DeGrasse, Stefanik’s senior adviser on the campaign, said Monday that he “never supported any racist position or made any racist statements.” She criticized the “weak and false reports” about her ads.

Stefanick is the third Republican leader in the House of Representatives, replacing lawmaker Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., Who angered the party with her allegations about Trump following the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

Cheney tweeted on Monday that the leadership of the parliamentary group “has allowed white nationalism, white supremacy and anti-Semitism. History has taught us that everything that starts with words ends with much worse.”

The rhetoric of replacement theory has also rippled through Republican campaigns.

“Democrats want open borders to be able to bring in and pardon tens of millions of illegal aliens – that’s their electoral strategy,” wrote Blake Masters, who is running in the Arizona Republican Senate by-election, on Twitter. the shooting in Buffalo. “Not on my watch.”

A Masters representative did not respond to a request for comment.

Although Biden has not spoken directly about substitution theory, his warnings about racism remain an appendage of his public speeches.

Three days before the Buffalo attack, at a Democratic rally in Chicago, Biden said, “I really believe we are still fighting for the soul of America.”


Associated Press writer Karen Matthews in New York contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2022 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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Buffalo shooting: Biden, first lady to meet with families of victims in supermarket shooting | Watch speech today live Source link Buffalo shooting: Biden, first lady to meet with families of victims in supermarket shooting | Watch speech today live

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