After 100 Years The Emmett Till Anti-lynching Act Finally Passes
On Monday, March 7, 2022, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed The Emmett Till Anti-lynching Act. Upon the passing of the bill, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer addressed the floor of the Senate saying,
"While this will not erase the horrific injustices to which 10s of 1000s of African Americans have been subjected over the generations, nor fully heal the terror inflicted on countless others, it is an important step forward as we continue the work of confronting our nation's past in pursuit of a brighter and more just future."
Incredibly it took 100 years and more than 200 attempts to pass anti-lynching legislation in America. Finally! President Biden will soon sign the bill into law, whereby it will be a federal offense that can be prosecuted as a lynching if an offender conspires to commit a hate crime resulting in someone's death or serious bodily injury. Under this bill kidnapping and aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to kidnap, abuse, or kill will be included.
One of the many Senators who worked tirelessly for years to get lynching legislation passed, Rep. Bobby L. Rush, D-Ill. said of this historic event, "Bypassing my Emmett Till Antilynching Act, the House has sent a resounding message that our nation is finally reckoning with one of the darkest and most horrific periods of our history and that we are morally and legally committed to changing course."
The act is named Emmett Till, a 14-year-old child who was dragged out of his bed in the middle of the night after a white woman, Carolyn Bryant, accused him of whistling at her the day before. The child was kidnapped and tortured before being shot in the head, then the killers, Roy Bryant and JW Milam tied a cotton gin fan around his neck using barbed wire and tossed his mutilated body into the Tallahatchie River.
Both Milam and Bryant were found not guilty by an all-white jury and protected against double jeopardy publicly admitted a year later, they killed Till. In addition, at age 72, Mrs. Bryant agreed to an interview for the book 'The Blood of Emmitt Till' by Timothy Tyson. She told Tyson that she lied and is quoted as saying,
"Nothing that boy did could ever justify what happened to him."