Attorney General Lynch Decries Increase In Hate Crimes Against Muslims


During 2015, which went into history as the year when Islamic terrorists massacred scores of innocent victims in high-profile attacks in Paris and California, 257 hate crimes against Muslims were reported in America, according to FBI statistics released this week.

Outgoing Attorney General Loretta Lynch condemned the rise in hate crimes against Muslims in a statement Friday.

“These numbers should be deeply sobering for all Americans,” Lynch said.

The FBI report, released Monday, said hate crimes against Muslims rose from 154 to 257, a 67 percent increase. The report said the number of hate crimes against Muslims hit its highest peak since 2001, the year of the 9/11 terrorist attacks against America.

The FBI reported an overall 6 percent increase in hate crimes for a total of 5,850 incidents.

Lynch noted that the report “also showed increases in the number of hate crimes committed against Jewish people, African-Americans and LGBT individuals.”

She then appeared to refer to incidents that have been reported in the wake of Donald Trump’s victory in the presidential election.

“Beyond these 2015 statistics, I know that many Americans are concerned by a spate of recent news reports about alleged hate crimes and harassment,” Lynch said. “Some of these incidents have happened in schools. Others have targeted houses of worship. And some have singled out individuals for attacks and intimidation.”

Lynch called for increased enforcement of hate crime laws.

“We still have a long way to go to ensure that every American can live free from the fear of violence or harassment based what they look like, how they worship or whom they love,” she said.

Lynch, who leaves office at the end of the Obama administration, is scheduled to be replaced by Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., whom Trump has nominated to the post.

In 2009, during debate on a hate crimes law that Congress had affixed to a defense budget bill, and which it would later pass, Sessions shared his feelings on the subject.

“There is no good reason to pass such a broad piece of legislation,” he said.

“No one believes that individuals should be assaulted because of their beliefs, their gender or their sexual orientation. That type of behavior is unacceptable and should be prosecuted. It has been prosecuted. I am sure State and local law enforcement officers will continue to do so,” he said then.

Sessions labeled the hate crime bill “one of the largest expansions of Federal law enforcement in history” and said the attorney general “should not allow politics to drive law in America.”

Sessions reminded his fellow senators that expanding the federal reach is not always a good idea.

“I want my colleagues to know it is time for us in Congress to step back and question carefully any proposal to create new or further expand federal criminal jurisdiction that would encroach upon the historic powers of our State and local law enforcement to enforce the law in their jurisdiction,” he added.

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