President Joe Biden has signed an anti-lynching bill into law named after Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black male who was lynched in Mississippi in 1955. The Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act makes lynching a federal hate crime in all states.

During the ceremony, Biden said that “racial hate isn’t an old problem but it’s a persistent problem.

“Lynching was pure terror to enforce the lie that not everyone belongs in America and not everyone is created equal,” Biden said.

Under the legislation, perpetrators can be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison. Before this legislation was passed, there were more than 200 failed attempts to outlaw lynching according to Seante Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

In the United States between 1877 and 1950, there were more than 4,000 racial lynchings according to a report by the Equal Justice Initiative.

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