A century has passed but in the end the measure has become a reality. Joe Biden signed a law in the White House today that considers lynching a federal offense. The approval came after the first attempt, 100 years ago, to make those who participate in the horrible practice widespread especially in the South of the USA responsible before the law.
‘The Emmett Till Antilynching Act’
The measure was called ‘The Emmett Till Antilynching Act’ to honor the memory of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old African-American from Chicago who was brutally murdered for racial reasons in Mississippi in 1955 while visiting his family.
Summary executions, which have become one of the symbols of the racist past of the United States, will now be officially banned throughout the United States. The legislation provides for up to 30 years in prison for this offense.
Joe Biden’s signature
Along with Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and Michelle Duster, a descendant of black journalist and activist Ida B. Wells, were present at the signing of the bill. “The lynchings were pure terror,” the president said, recalling the public killings of mostly black people, often in front of cheering white crowds. “Racial hatred is not an old problem. It is a persistent problem “that” never goes away, it hides, “Biden warned.
Lynching was a widespread practice in the US in the 19th and 20th centuries. It is estimated that nearly 5,000 people, mostly blacks, were subjected to lynching between 1882 and 1968. In 99% of cases, the perpetrators got away with the law.