- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 14, 2016

Republican Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina delivered an powerful floor speech Wednesday describing the unfair police scrutiny he has faced as a black man.

“I have felt the anger, the frustration, the sadness and the humiliation that comes with feeling like you’re being targeted for nothing more than just being yourself,” said Mr. Scott, who is one of just two black members of the U.S. Senate and the only black Republican.

“In the course of one year, I’ve been stopped seven times by law enforcement,” he told members of the upper chamber, CNN reported. “Not four, not five, not six, but seven times in one year as an elected official.

“Was I speeding sometimes? Sure, but the vast majority of the time, I was pulled over for nothing more than driving a new car in the wrong neighborhood or some other reason just as trivial,” he said. “I do not know many African-American men who do not have a very similar story to tell — no matter their profession, no matter their income, no matter their disposition in life.”

The senator went on to mention several other incidents, including a capitol police officer demanding to see his identification, and being denied entry to an event he was scheduled to attend while serving in the House of Representatives, ABC News reported.

“The officer looked at me with a little attitude and said, ‘The pin, I know. You, I don’t. Show me your ID,’” Mr. Scott recalled.

Another time a police officer followed him all the way home from a shopping mall and accused him of failing to use a turn signal during the trek.

“The officer approached the car and said I did not use my turn signal on the fourth turn,” he said. “Keep in my mind, as you might imagine, I was paying very close attention to the law enforcement officer who followed me. Do you really think that somehow I forgot to use my turn signal on that fourth turn?”

The candid speech was the second of three the conservative first-term senator is delivering this week related to the recent police shootings of two black men in Louisiana and Minnesota and the black gunman in Dallas who killed five police officers at a Black Lives Matter rally, CNN reported.

Mr. Scott described Wednesday’s speech as “the most difficult because it is the most personal.”

“In many cities and towns across America, there is a deep divide between the black community and law enforcement. A trust gap, a tension that has been growing for decades. And as a family, one American family, we cannot ignore these issues,” he said. “Recognize that just because you do not feel the pain, the anguish of another, does not mean it does not exist. To ignore their struggles, our struggles, does not make them disappear. It simply leaves you blind and the American family very vulnerable.”

Mr. Scott also praised police officers for putting their lives on the line every day to protect Americans.

“There is never, ever an acceptable reason to harm a member of our law enforcement community,” he said, CNN reported.

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