- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden supports upping the penalties on people who make false race-based 911 emergency phone calls.

In a USA Today op-ed, the former vice president said President Trump’s “hate-filled conspiracy-laden rhetoric is inflaming racial divides” and said that the nation must make changes to the law to root out racism and address inequality.

“For too long, black Americans have lived with a knee on their neck — not only institutional violence, but daily injustices like having the police called for sitting in a coffee shop or watching birds in the park,” Mr. Biden said. “I support the proposal pending in New York to enhance penalties for making a false 911 call based on race, gender or religion. No one should be subjected to that kind of discrimination, ever.”

The proposal comes after a viral video surfaced of Amy Cooper calling 911 on a black man watching birds in Central Park in New York City after he apparently had requested that she put her dog on a lease as it calls for in the law.

Mr. Biden also called for opening up more lines of credit to black businessmen and entrepreneurs, and providing local officials with the “tools to combat gentrification.”

• Seth McLaughlin can be reached at smclaughlin@washingtontimes.com.

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