Sen. Tim Scott defended his statement on Sunday “America is not a racist country” in its rebuttal of President Biden’s speech to Congress – saying that the US cannot replace one form of discrimination with another.
South Carolina Republican, appearing Sunday CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” said “thank goodness” the president and vice president Kamala Harris agree on a topic “I’ve been saying for a long time, America is not a racist country.”
“The question is, is there a continued effect after a few centuries of racism and discrimination in this country. The answer is absolute, ”he said during the interview.
“The question we need to debate and fight about is how we will solve those problems in the future. One side says, I’m going to take some to give to others. Fighting bigotry with bigotry is hypocrisy, it just doesn’t work, ”he added.
He said he and other Republicans have proposed expanding “opportunities” to ensure that “we are fully equipped for the challenges of the future.”
“One of the reasons we’ve fought for and won the highest level of funding for historically black colleges, Republicans who believe in that fight, is because I understand that if I can level the playing field in education, we’ll see people thriving like we’ve never seen it before, ”he said.
Host John Dickerson asked Scott if the coronavirus pandemic “ exposed ” inequalities in black communities.
“If you pass a COVID package with $ 2 trillion in expenses, and in your package you hide in it: if you are a black farmer, we will give you resources, but if you are a white farmer, you are excluded from the same Resources. That takes one to give another, “Scott said, referring to a US Department of Agriculture initiative that has filed a number of lawsuits against white farmers.
“So we’re going to reverse that and call that a way to create fairness in our country. That doesn’t really work, ”Scott said.
Scott, the only black Republican senator, was attacked by progressives and some Democrats after his response to Biden’s speech calling him last week “Uncle Tim” – a racial slur that kept Twitter evolving for hours before intervening to stop it.
“Hear me clearly: America is not a racist country. It is backward to fight discrimination with different forms of discrimination. And it is wrong to try to use our painful past to unfairly end debates in the present, ”he said on Wednesday.
“Original sin is never the end of the story. Not in our soul and not for our nation. The real story is always redemption, ”said Scott.
When asked if he agreed with Scott’s assessment of race in the US, Biden said he also doesn’t believe “the American people are racist.”
“But I think after 400 years, African Americans are left in a position where they are so far behind the eight ball in terms of education and health, in terms of opportunities,” he said.