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Lynching constitutes an organized effort not only to punish the persons lynched but also to terrorize the groups, in the community or elsewhere, of which the persons lynched are members by reason of their race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, language, or religion, and thus to deny to all members of such groups, and to prevent them from exercising the rights guaranteed to them by the Constitution and laws of the United States. By condoning lynching, the State makes the lynching, punishment without due process of law, or other denial of the equal protection of the laws its own act and gives the color and authority of State law to the acts of those guilty of the lynching, punishment, or other denial.
(b) When persons within a State are deprived by a State or by individuals within a State, with or without condonation by a State or its officials, of equal protection of the laws because of race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, language, or religion, they are denied, or limited in the exercise of, human rights and fundamental freedoms.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of the fourteenth amendment to the Constitution of the United States citizens of the United States and other persons have been denied the equal protection of the laws by reason of mob violence.
(d) This mob violence is in many instances the result of acts of omission on the part of State and local officials.
(e) These omissions on the part of State and local officials are not only contrary to the fourteenth amendment, but also to the law of nations, which requires that every person be secure against violence to himself or his property by reason of his race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, language, or religion and spe cifically contrary to article 55 of the Charter of the United Nations which pledges the United States to promote universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and fundamental freedoms.
SEC. 2. The Congress finds that the succeeding provisions of this Act are necessary in order to accomplish the following purposes :
(a) To enforce the provisions of article XIV, section 1, of the amendments of the Constitution of the United States.
(b) To promote universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction as to race, language, or religion, in accordance with the treaty obligations assumed by the United States under article 55 and article 56 of the United Nations Charter.
(c) To define and punish offenses against the law of nations.
RIGHT TO BE FREE OF LYNCHING AND LYNCH-MOB VIOLENCE
SEC. 3. It is hereby declared that the right to be free from lynching and lynchmob violence is a right of citizens of the United States, accruing to them by virtue of such citizenship. Such right is in addition to any similar rights they may have as citizens of any of the several States or as persons within their jurisdcton.
SEC. 4. As used in this Act
(a) The term "lynch mob" means any assemblage of two or more persons which shall, without authority of law, (1) commit or attempt to commit an act or acts of violence upon the person or property of any citizen or citizens of the United States or other person or persons, or (2) exercise or attempt to exercise, by physical violence against person or property, any power of correction or punishment over any citizen or citizens of the United States or other person or persons in the custody of any peace office or suspected of, charged with, or convicted of the commission of any criminal offense, with the purpose or consequence of preventing the apprehension or trial or punishment by law of such citizen or citizens, person or persons, or of imposing a punishment not authorized by law.
(b) The term "lynching" means any act or acts of violence by a lynch mob.
PUNISHMENT FOR LYNCHING
SEC. 5. Any permon, whether or not a member of a lynch mob, who willfully instigates, incites, organizes, aids, or abets such a mob committing an act of volence shall be guilty of a felony and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $10,000 or by imprisonment not exceeding twenty years, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
SUBCOMMITTEE NO. 4 OF THE
H. R. 41, H. R. 57, H.R. 77, H. R. 223, H.R. 228, H. R. 800,
and H. R. 278
H. R. 1709
OF THE LAWS, AND TO PREVENT THE CRIME OF LYNCHING
FOR OTHER PURPOSES
H. R. 4528
WAYNCHING, AND FOR
Serial No. 14
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
EARL C. MICHENER, Michigan, Chairman JOHN M. ROBSION, Kentucky
EMANUEL CELLER, New York CHAUNCEY W. REED, Illinois
FRANCIS E. WALTERS, Pennsylvania JOHN W. GWYNNE, Iowa
SAM HOBBS, Alabama LOUIS E. GRAHAM, Pennsylvania
WILLIAM T. BYRNE, New York FRANK FELLOWS, Maine
ESTES KEFAUVER, Tennessee EARL R. LEWIS, Ohio
JOSEPH R. BRYSON, South Carolina JOHN JENNINGS, JR., Tennessee
FADJO CRAVENS, Arkansas CLIFFORD P. CASE, New Jersey
THOMAS J. LANE, Massachusetts E. WALLACE CHADWICK, Pennsylvania MARTIN GORSKI, Illinois ALBERT L. REEVES, JR., Missouri
MICHAEL A. FEIGHAN, Ohio KENNETH B. KEATING, New York
FRANK L. CHELF, Kentucky
ED GOSSETT, Texas
C. MURRAY BERNHARDT, Chief Clerk
SUBCOMMITTEE NO. 4
CLIFFORD P. CASE, New Jersey, Chairman FRANK FELLOWS, Maine
WILLIAM T. BYRNE, New York EDWARD J. DEVITT, Minnesota
FADJO CRAVENS, Arkansas
MICHAEL A. FEIGHAN, Ohio
Page Texts of bills.
1 Testimony of—
Hon. Gordon Canfield, a Representative in Congress from the State of New Jersey
32 Hon. John W. Heselton, a Representative in Congress from the State of Massachusetts..
33 Hon. Joseph R. Bryson, a Representative in Congress from the State of South Carolina..
34 Hon. Emanuel Celler, a Representative in Congress from the State of New York
35 Hon. Helen Gahagan Douglas, a Representative in Congress from the State of California
37 · Hon. Kenneth B. Keating, a Representative in Congress from the State of New York,
41 Hon. T. Millet Hand, a Representative in Congress from the State of New Jersey
46 Hon. Charles R. Clason, a Representative in Congress from the State of Massachusetts
47 Mr. Walter White, executive secretary, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People--
48 Mr. Mike Masaoka, Japanese American Citizens League antidiscrimination committee -
68 Mr. Bruce Waybur, United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America, CIO
72 Hon. Sam Hobbs, a Representative in Congress from the State of Alabama..
75 Hon. Adam C. Powell, Jr., a Representative in Congress from the State of New York..
96 Mr. Carl W. Berueffy, attorney, American Civil Liberties Union.. 98 Mr. Joseph B. Robison, attorney, American Jewish Congress
102 Hon. John E. Rankin, a Representative in Congress from the State of Mississippi.--
120 Hon. W. J. Bryan Dorn, a Representative in Congress from the State of South Carolina.
127 Hon. John Bell Williams, a Representative in Congress from the State
of Mississippi.. Additional and supporting documents introduced: Statement of Hon. John W. Heselton, supra.
33 Statement of Hon. Helen Gahagan Douglas, supra
38 Socio-economic studies of lynchings, introduced by Mr. White, supra- 54 Treatise entitled “A Generation of Lynching in the United States, 1921-46,”” introduced by Mr. White, supra
61 Statement of Mr. Masaoka, supra-,
69 Statement of American Civil Liberties Union...
99 Statements (2) of American Jewish Congress, introduced by Mr. Robison, supra
111, 115 APPENDIX Message from the President of the United States on civil-rights program.- 134 Excerpts from report of President's Committee on Civil Rights...
139 Article entitled "Opera in Greenville," by Rebecca West, reprinted in full from the June 34, 1947, issue of New Yorker magazine
153 Statement of United Office and Professional Workers of America, CIO.- 172