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Counter Stories: Why blaming the president will not stop hate crimes

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Samantha Salazar and Sarah Estrada join mourners gathered for a vigil.
Samantha Salazar, left, and Sarah Estrada join mourners gathered at Ponder Park in El Paso, Texas, for a community vigil on Sunday night, Aug. 4, 2019, after a mass shooting at a Walmart the day before.
Vernon Bryant | The Dallas Morning News via AP

America has the world's worst gun problem. And now it's being forced to confront its hate problem.

In the span of 24 hours last weekend, two mass shootings — one in El Paso, Texas, and the other in Dayton, Ohio — left more than 30 people dead.

As the country reels from these tragedies, President Trump faces criticism over his anti-immigration language. In Dayton, protesters accused Trump of stoking violence with his racially-charged rhetoric. During his visit they held signs which read "Do Something" and "Hate not welcome here."

In his response to the shootings, the president said hate has no place in our country. But others say racial hatred is a through-line in our history.

The Counter Stories team looks at how communities of color are responding to the most recent mass shootings.

The Counter Stories hosts for this episode are:

  • Hlee Lee, owner of “the other media group”

  • Luz Maria Frias, executive coach and race equity strategist

  • Anthony Galloway, executive director of the ARTS-Us Center for the African Diaspora

  • Don Eubanks, associate professor at Metropolitan State University and cultural consultant

  • Marianne Combs, reporter and producer at MPR News