Kamala Harris, a front-runner for the Democratic Party nomination for president in 2020, boasted in an email to supporters about the passage of a bill she sponsored that made lynching a federal crime. In the email, Harris wrote at the beginning of the text in small type "Content warning: this email contains language about lynching and death that some readers may find upsetting." 

Harris described the lynching of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old who was visiting family in Mississippi when he was accused of whistling at a white woman. "Four days later, the woman’s husband and his brother kidnapped Emmett. They tortured and beat him, then shot him in the head," Harris wrote. "They threw his body -- tied to a cotton-gin fan with barbed wire -- into the river. The men were tried for murder, but a jury of white men acquitted them. Justice was not served."

The bipartisan Justice for Victims of Lynching Act of 2018 was introduced by Harris (D-CA), Corey Booker (D-NJ), and Tim Scott (R-SC) and passed the Senate unanimously. It now heads to the House of Representatives before heading to the President's desk. 

The legislation says if two or more people are convicted of killing someone because of their "actual or perceived race, color, religion, or national origin," they can be sentenced to up to life in prison. The Bill also adds a clause stating if there is "bodily harm" then the accused will face no less than 10-years in prison.

Southern Democrats have long opposed federal anti-lynching laws. According to research from Tuskegee University, there were more than 4,700 lynchings between 1882 and 1968, with African Americans making 75 percent of the victims before the end of World War II.

Trigger warnings 'coddle the mind'

Over the past two decades, academia increasingly warned students about historical facts with warning notes that information may trigger a past traumatic experience for those who experience PTSD. In an article for the New York Times in 2016, Harvard psychology professor Dr. Richard McNally wrote "severe emotional reactions triggered by course material are a signal that students need to prioritize their mental health and obtain evidence-based, cognitive-behavioral therapies that will help them overcome PTSD." 

Over time, the trigger warnings have become broader to encompass any information that negatively excites emotions or generally upsets someone. In a 2015 article by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt, who authored the book "The Coddling of the American Mind", they wrote that ideas and words are not the same as violence and “rather than trying to protect students from words and ideas that they will inevitably encounter, colleges should do all they can to equip students to thrive in a world full of words and ideas that they cannot control.”

Leftists, particularly, have used the concept of trigger warnings to censor individuals and groups from participating on campus debates such as Milo Yiannopoulos, Star Parker, Ann Coulter and Ben Stein. 

As the world shifts from paper publishing to digital publishing, Silicon Valley companies have become publishers and gateways to information. With workforces that consist of millenials who grew-up in a world that protected them from ideas that might upset them, this has translated into censorship of conservative political opinions on the platforms that Silicon Valley controls such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Google.

Editor's Note: Spero News experiences censorship on Google and YouTube because of our political philosophy and worldview. In August, Google demonetized our entire YouTube account without explanation.



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Clinton Gillespie is editor

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