[House Report 108-249]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



108th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                    108-249

======================================================================



 
    CONDEMNING BIGOTRY AND VIOLENCE AGAINST ARAB-AMERICANS, MUSLIM-
          AMERICANS, SOUTH ASIAN-AMERICANS, AND SIKH-AMERICANS

                                _______
                                

 September 3, 2003.--Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be 
                                printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Sensenbrenner, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                       [To accompany H. Res. 234]

    The Committee on the Judiciary, to whom was referred the 
resolution (H. Res. 234) condemning bigotry and violence 
against Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-
Americans, and Sikh-Americans, having considered the same, 
reports favorably thereon without amendment and recommends that 
the resolution be agreed to.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Purpose and Summary..............................................     1
Background and Need for the Legislation..........................     2
Hearings.........................................................     3
Committee Consideration..........................................     4
Vote of the Committee............................................     4
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     4
New Budget Authority and Tax Expenditures........................     4
Committee Cost Estimate..........................................     4
Performance Goals and Objectives.................................     4
Constitutional Authority Statement...............................     4
Section-by-Section Analysis and Discussion.......................     4
Markup Transcript................................................     5

                          Purpose and Summary

    Introduced by Representative Darrell Issa on May 14, 2003, 
the purpose of H. Res. 234 is to condemn bigotry and violence 
against Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-
Americans, and Sikh-Americans. S. Res. 133, a virtually 
identical Senate resolution, was introduced by Senator Richard 
Durbin on May 6, 2003, and was passed by the Senate by 
unanimous consent on May 22, 2003.\1\
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    \1\ 149 Cong. Rec. S7070 (2003).
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                Background and Need for the Legislation

    H. Res. 234 condemns bigotry and violence against 
individuals of Arab-American, Muslim-American, South Asian-
American, and Sikh-American descent. It was introduced in 
response to concerns about an increase in discriminatory 
backlash crimes following the commencement of miliary action in 
Iraq in March 2003. Specifically, H. Res. 234 recognizes the 
many contributions of Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South 
Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans to the nation, calls upon 
law enforcement authorities to work vigorously to prevent 
discriminatory backlash crimes against such persons and to 
aggressively investigate and prosecute crimes that do occur, 
and reaffirms the House of Representatives's commitment to 
assuring that the civil rights of all Americans, including 
individuals of Arab-American, Muslim-American, South Asian-
American, and Sikh-American descent, be protected.

 THE PROSECUTION OF DISCRIMINATORY BACKLASH CRIMES IN THE WAKE OF THE 
                 SEPTEMBER 11, 2001, TERRORIST ATTACKS

    The weeks and months following the terrorist attacks of 
September 11, 2001, saw a significant increase in the number of 
crimes committed against those perceived to be of Arab-
American, Muslim-American, South Asian-American and Sikh-
American descent.\2\ According to hate crimes statistics 
compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (the ``FBI''), 
criminal acts ``motivated by bias against ethnicity/national 
origin were the second most frequently reported bias in 2001, 
more than doubling the number of incidents, offenses, victims, 
and known offenders from 2000 data'' and ``the anti-other 
ethnicity/national origin category quadrupled in incidents, 
offenses, victims, and known offenders.'' \3\ Similarly, the 
number of anti-Islamic incidents grew 1600 percent between 2000 
and 2001 taking such incidents from the second-least reported 
category of reported religious-bias incidents in 2000 to the 
second-highest reported category of religious-bias incidents in 
2001.\4\
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    \2\ See U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of 
Investigation, Hate Crimes Statistics 2001.
    \3\ Id. at Forward. The significance of this increase can be seen 
when compared to statistics compiled from previous years.

      From the first year that national hate crime data were 
      published in 1992 until 2000, incidents motivated by racial 
      bias comprised the largest portion of reported hate crime 
      incidents followed by incidents motivated by a religious 
      bias and those motivated by bias against sexual 
      orientation. The fewest number of hate crime incidents 
      resulted from ethnicity or national-origin bias, until the 
      addition of the disability bias in 1997, which then became 
      the lowest portion of reported hate crime incidents. Id.
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    \4\ See id.
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    In response, shortly after the September 2001 terrorist 
attacks, then Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights 
Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (``DOJ''), Ralph 
Boyd, instructed the Division's National Origin Working Group 
to help combat violations of Federal civil rights laws 
involving individuals perceived to be of Arab-American, Muslim-
American, South Asian-American, or Sikh-American descent. 
Specifically, the Working Group was directed to receive reports 
of violations based upon national origin, citizenship status, 
and religion in the context of housing, education, employment, 
access to government services, and law enforcement; conduct 
outreach to vulnerable communities; and work with other Civil 
Rights Division components and governmental agencies to ensure 
accurate referral, effective outreach, and the provision of 
services to victims of civil rights violations.\5\
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    \5\ See Civil Rights Division National Origin Working Group 
Initiative to Combat the Post-9/11 Discriminatory Backlash, Division 
News Release (Jan. 16, 2002), available at .
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    In April 2003, Attorney General John Ashcroft announced 
that approximately 400 incidents of backlash discrimination 
have been investigated since September 2001 by the Civil Rights 
Division, the FBI, and the U.S. Attorneys' offices; that of 
these investigations, approximately seventy State and local 
criminal prosecutions were initiated and Federal charges were 
brought in ten cases; that DOJ has contributed to approximately 
100 backlash prosecutions in federal, State, and local courts 
since September 2001; and that DOJ's Community Relations 
Service has held more than 250 town and community meetings and 
forums on backlash issues and developed best practices for law 
enforcement to prevent and respond to hate incidents against 
Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-Americans, and 
Sikh-Americans.\6\ In addition, in the process of conducting 
interviews for its Iraq-related terrorism prevention efforts, 
the FBI asked those interviewed if they were aware of any 
backlash discrimination or hate crimes. As a result of the 
information it received, the Civil Rights Division opened 36 
new investigations.\7\
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    \6\ Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI Director Richard 
Mueller, U.S. Department of Justice News Conference, (Apr. 17, 2003) 
available at 2003 WL 6684451.
    \7\ Id.
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ACTS OF DISCRIMINATORY BACKLASH VIOLENCE FOLLOWING THE COMMENCEMENT OF 
                            THE WAR IN IRAQ

    Although the number of bias-motivated incidents fell 
substantially in 2002, certain alarming crimes in early 2003 
have raised concerns that the commencement of military action 
in Iraq has led, and might continue to lead, to an increase in 
discriminatory backlash crimes here in America. In February and 
March 2003, apparently motivated by anti-Arab sentiment, a man 
shot and killed four people in New York City.\8\ At the 
University of California in Los Angeles, apparently motivated 
by anti-Muslim bias, pig's blood was poured on Muslim prayer 
rugs in an interdenominational chapel.\9\
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    \8\ 149 Cong. Rec. S. 5789 (2003) (statement of Sen. Richard J. 
Durbin).
    \9\ Id.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Similar to H. Con. Res. 227, which was approved by the 
House just days after the terrorist attacks of September 2001, 
H. Res. 234 will again express this body's appreciation for the 
contribution of Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-
Americans, and Sikh-Americans to the nation and its 
condemnation of all actions of bigotry and violence directed 
towards such persons.\10\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \10\ H. Con. Res., 227 107th Cong. (2001), introduced on September 
14, 2001 by Rep. David Bonior, condemned any acts of violence or 
discrimination against Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, and South 
Asian-Americans and called for the protection of the civil rights and 
civil liberties of such persons as the nation sought to ``bring to 
justice, and punish the perpetrators and sponsors'' of the terrorist 
attacks of September 11, 2001.
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                                Hearings

    No hearings were held on H. Res. 234.

                        Committee Consideration

    On July 25, 2003, the Committee met in open session and 
ordered favorably reported the resolution H. Res. 234, without 
amendment by a voice vote, a quorum being present.

                         Vote of the Committee

    In compliance with clause 3(b) of Rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, the Committee notes that there 
were no recorded votes during the committee consideration of H. 
Res. 234.

                      Committee Oversight Findings

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(1) of Rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee reports that the 
findings and recommendations of the Committee, based on 
oversight activities under clause 2(b)(1) of Rule X of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives, are incorporated in the 
descriptive portions of this report.

               New Budget Authority and Tax Expenditures

    Clause 3(c)(2) of Rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives is inapplicable because this legislation does 
not provide new budgetary authority or increased tax 
expenditures.

                        Committee Cost Estimate

    In compliance with clause 3(d)(2) of Rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee notes that no 
Committee cost estimate is required because H. Res 234 is not a 
bill nor a joint resolution. In addition, the Committee notes 
that it did not receive a cost estimate from the Congressional 
Budget Office with respect to H. Res. 234.

                    Performance Goals and Objectives

    H. Res. 234 does not authorize funding. Therefore, clause 
3(c)(4) of Rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives is inapplicable.

                   Constitutional Authority Statement

    Pursuant to clause 3(d)(1) of Rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee finds the authority for 
this legislation in article I, section 8 of the Constitution.

               Section-by-Section Analysis and Discussion

    The first paragraph of the preamble states that the House 
of Representatives finds that all Americans are united in 
supporting American men and women who protect the nation abroad 
and at home.
    The second paragraph of the preamble states that the House 
of Representatives finds that thousands of Arab-Americans, 
Muslim-Americans, South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans 
serve in the military and in law enforcement, and thus work to 
protect all Americans.
    The third paragraph of the preamble states that the House 
of Representatives finds that the Arab-American, Muslim-
American, South Asian-American, and Sikh-American communities 
are vibrant, peaceful, and law-abiding, and have greatly 
contributed to American society.
    The fourth paragraph of the preamble states that the House 
of Representatives finds that all Americans, including Arab-
Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-
Americans, condemn acts of violence and prejudice.
    Section (1) of the resolving clause states that the House 
of Representatives expresses its concern about the number of 
bias-motivated crimes against Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, 
South Asian-Americans, Sikh-Americans, and other Americans in 
recent months.
    Section (2) of the resolving clause states that the House 
of Representatives declares that the civil rights and civil 
liberties of all Americans, including Arab-Americans, Muslim-
Americans, South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans, should be 
protected.
    Section (3) of the resolving clause states that the House 
of Representatives condemns bigotry and acts of violence 
against any American, including Arab-Americans, Muslim-
Americans, South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans.
    Section (4) of the resolving clause states that the House 
of Representatives calls upon local, State, and Federal law 
enforcement authorities to work to prevent bias-motivated 
crimes against all Americans, including Arab-Americans, Muslim-
Americans, South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans.
    Section (5) of the resolving clause states that the House 
calls upon local, State, and Federal law enforcement 
authorities to investigate and prosecute vigorously all such 
crimes committed against Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, 
South Asian-Americans, and Sikh-Americans.

                           Markup Transcript



                            BUSINESS MEETING

                         FRIDAY, JULY 25, 2003

                  House of Representatives,
                                Committee on the Judiciary,
                                                    Washington, DC.
    The Committee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:40 a.m., in 
Room 2141, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. F. James 
Sensenbrenner, Jr., [Chairman of the Committee] presiding.
    [Intervening business.]
    Chairman Sensenbrenner. Pursuant to notice I now call up 
House Resolution 234, condemning bigotry and violence against 
Arab-Americans, Muslim-Americans, South Asian-Americans and 
Sikh-Americans, for purposes of markup and move its favorable 
recommendation to the House. Without objection, the resolution 
will be considered as read and open for amendment at any point.
    [The resolution, H. Res. 234, follows:]




    Chairman Sensenbrenner. And without objection, all Members' 
opening statements will be placed in the record at this point.
    [The prepared statement of Ms. Jackson Lee follows:]

       Prepared Statement of the Honorable Sheila Jackson Lee, a 
           Representative in Congress From the State of Texas

    Thank you Chairman Sensenbrenner and Ranking Member Conyers for 
convening this Full Committee Markup opportunity concerning the 
condemnation of bigotry and violence against Arab, Muslim, South Asian, 
and Sikh-Americans. As a co-sponsor of this resolution, I won't 
hesitate to vocalize my support for it and echo its import.

                     RACIAL PROFILING AND TERRORISM

    The events of September 11, 2001 have had a profound impact on 
racial profiling. Following the terrorist attacks, law enforcement 
agents have subjected individuals of Arab or South Asian descent, 
Muslims, and Sikhs to racial profiling. While national and local 
statistics are not yet available, anecdotal accounts of how Arabs, 
Muslims, and Sikhs have endured racial profiling abound the 
informational resources.
    For example, in the months following September 11th, a new type of 
racial profiling has developed: ``driving while Arab.'' Arabs, Muslim, 
and Sikhs across the country were subjected to traffic stops and 
searches based in whole or part on their ethnicity or religion. On 
October 4, 2001 in Gwinnett, Georgia an Arab motorist's car was 
stopped, he was approached by a police officer whose gun was drawn, and 
he was called a ``bin Laden supporter'' all for making an illegal U-
turn. On October 8, 2001, two Alexandria, VA police officers stopped 
three Arab motorists. The officers questioned the motorists about a 
verse of the Koran hanging from the rear view mirror, and asked about 
documents in the back seat. The police officer confiscated the 
motorists' identification cards and drove off without explanation. He 
returned 10 minutes later, and claimed be had had to take another call. 
On December 5, 2001, a veiled Muslim woman in Burbank, Illinois was 
stopped by a police officer for driving with suspended plates. The 
officer asked the woman when Ramadan was over, asked her offensive 
question about her hair, and pushed her into his patrol car as he 
arrested her for driving with suspended plates. The woman was released 
from custody later that day.
    A particularly egregious form of terrorism profiling occurs when 
Arab men and women are detained and deported without due process. Since 
September 11th, hundreds of Arab and Muslim individuals have been 
detained on suspicion of terrorist activity. Practically none of these 
individuals was involved with terrorism. However, many were detained 
for weeks and eventually charged with minor immigration violations. 
Based on these minor immigration violations some were deported. In one 
case, two Pakistani immigrants were arrested and detained 45 days for 
allegedly overstaying their visas. In another case an Israeli was 
detained for 66 days before being charged with entering the United 
States unlawfully. In a particularly shocking case, a French teacher 
from Yemen, who was married to an American citizen and therefore 
eligible to become a citizen himself, was reporting for duty as an army 
recruit at Fort Campbell, Kentucky on September 15, 2001. The man was 
apprehended by federal agents, separated from his wife and interrogated 
for 12 hours. The agents accused him of violating immigration laws, 
conspiring with Russian terrorists, spousal abuse, and threatened him 
with beatings. The man was given a lie detector test which proved he 
was telling the truth when he denied being associated with terrorists.
    Expounding upon the above issue is a trend of ethnic profiling 
against South Asian-Americans relative to the SARS pandemic. People 
have been treated with indifference and hostility because of their 
racial background. This treatment is simply founded upon ignorance. 
Human rights and the principles of due process, freedom of expression, 
and freedom of association should not be compromised by ignorance.

                  THE CONSEQUENCES OF RACIAL PROFILING

    The Consequences of Racial Profiling for minority groups in the 
United States, for Arab, Muslim, South Asian, and Sikh groups, and in 
the immigrations context are dire for individuals who are both innocent 
and guilty of criminal activity. In the case of the innocent, for every 
person in possession of drugs apprehended through profiling, many more 
law-abiding minorities are treated as if they are criminals. A 1999 
Gallup Poll revealed that 42 percent of African Americans, and 72 
percent of African American males between the ages of 18 and 34, 
believe they have been stopped by police because of their race. In 
fact, many minorities choose to drive certain cars, on certain routes, 
wearing certain clothes, to avoid drawing attention from police.
    For those individuals who have been convicted of felonies, racial 
profiling contributes to the disparity in arrest and crime rates that 
leads to the minority-majority prison population. Blacks are just 12 
percent of the U.S. population and 11 percent of drug users, but Blacks 
are 38 percent of those arrested for drug offenses and 59 percent of 
those convicted for drug offenses. Hispanics make up 13 percent of the 
population and 10 percent of illicit drug users, but they are 37 
percent of the overall prison population. Racial profiling increases 
the stops and arrests of minority groups. Frequent stops and arrests of 
minorities generate more extensive criminal histories, and result in 
longer sentences. Nearly one in three Black males aged 20-29 on any 
given day is either is prison, on probation, or on parole. As of 1995, 
on in 14 adult Black males was in prison or jail on any give day. A 
Black male born in 1991 has a 33 percent chance of spending part of his 
life in prison. A Hispanic male has a one in six chance.
    Racial profiling results in increased arrests and convictions of 
minorities. In many states, a felony conviction can impact a person's 
ability to exercise their basic social rights. In 46 states and the 
District of Columbia, convicted adults cannot vote. Thirty-two states 
disenfranchise felons on parole, while 29 states disenfranchise felons 
on probation. In part due to racial profiling, 1.4 million Black men, 
13 percent of all adult Black males, are denied the right to vote. In 
two states, 31 percent of all adult Black males are permanently 
disenfranchised.
    For the reasons stated above, Mr. Chairman and Ranking Member, I 
support the Resolution condemning bigotry and violence against Arab, 
Muslim, South Asian, and Sikh-Americans that I have co-sponsored. I 
would ask that my Colleagues join my fellow sponsors in fighting 
bigotry with H. Res. 234. Thank you for the opportunity to speak on 
this matter.

    Chairman Sensenbrenner. Are there amendments? If there are 
no amendments, a reporting quorum is not present. Without 
objection, the previous question is ordered on the motion to 
report the bill favorably.
    [Intervening busines.]
    Chairman Sensenbrenner. The unfinished business is the 
motion to report favorably House Resolution 234, upon which the 
previous question to report favorably had been ordered. Those 
in favor of reporting the resolution favorably will say aye.
    Opposed, no.
    The ayes appear to have it. The ayes have it. The motion to 
report favorably is agreed to.
    Without objection, the staff will be given authority to 
make technical and conforming changes.
    And without objection, all Members will be given 2 days 
pursuant to the rules in which to submit additional, 
supplemental, minority or dissenting views.