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March 18, 2019

Bishop Garrison: America urgently needs to do more to counter violent extremism

By Rainey Center

Last week’s horrifying attacks on two New Zealand mosques is the latest data point showing the disturbing trend of vitriol and hatred in our society. Rainey Center co-founder and president, Bishop Garrison, joined Ryan Greer, director for program assessment and strategy at the Anti-Defamation League, to call for more investment in countering this violent trend.

In an article last week for Just Security, Garrison and Greer said, “Our action must involve... a strong reinvestment in countering violent extremism, or CVE, programs that focus more directly on groups like Neo-Nazis, white nationalists, misogynists, and white supremacists who have perpetrated the aforementioned attacks.”

They explain that this is urgent now, not just because of the rising tide of violence, but because of the Trump administration’s gutting of funding and staffing for America’s CVE programs. At its height, the CVE program consisted of a 41-person staff and had a $21 million per year budget, but now it is a “paltry” eight-person staff and $3 million budget, which is wholly insufficient for preventing violence throughout the United States.

“It is a national security imperative that we invest in preventing the next extremists here and abroad, regardless of those extremists’ ideologies or skin colors.” Garrison and Greer say.

Read the full article here.

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