Hern statement on George Floyd and the 99th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre
Washington, June 1, 2020 | Miranda Dabney
TULSA, OK – This morning, Representative Kevin Hern (OK-01) released the following statement recognizing 99 years since the Tulsa Race Massacre, the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, and the protests in Tulsa this weekend.
“99 years ago, Tulsa faced one of the darkest moments in our city’s history,” said Rep. Hern. “White rioters burned down Black Wall Street, our nation’s most affluent black neighborhood, in the worst act of racial violence American has ever seen. This is the most shameful chapter in our city’s history.
“Nearly a century has passed, but racial inequality is still alive and well in the United States. The injustice done to George Floyd and his family is reprehensible. Records show that this bad cop had a history of excessive force incidents – he should not have been on the police force in the first place. I join President Trump’s call for a full investigation, and I pray justice is served.”
Rep. Hern continued, “Our nation is hurting, that much is crystal clear. We are currently facing unrest unlike any we’ve seen since the 1960s. We have a right to be angry, and I applaud those around the country who have engaged in peaceful protests. This weekend, we had multiple peaceful demonstrations around Tulsa. While many of our country’s cities are on fire, protesters in Tulsa worked hard to keep the peace, protect our city, and stop out-of-state agitators from inciting violence. I support the Tulsans who marched this weekend, and I support those who attended similar demonstrations around the country. I cannot, however, sanction or support the destruction of property. Businesses in our country have never been in a more vulnerable position. We are just beginning to reopen get our local economies running again, we cannot sabotage our own recovery. Fortunately, this was not the case in Tulsa, but I’ve seen countless small business owners across the country, including many minority and immigrant business owners, watch their life’s work go up in flames in response to a crime committed by four white cops in Minneapolis.
“Now is a time for unity, to bring people of all backgrounds and beliefs together in pursuit of justice. This is not the time to incite violence and divide us further. We want a more equal, fair America. Burning down our communities only exacerbates inequality in our most vulnerable populations. I pray for peace in our country soon. We are incredibly strong as a people, and we must not let evil divide us like it did 99 years ago. Now is the time for strength and leadership. We must do everything we can to prevent the further destruction of our communities.”