Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

ONE DAY left in this Mid-Year Campaign. This is our hour of need.
If you value independent journalism, please support Common Dreams.

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

For Immediate Release


Rebecca Sharer,  

Press Release

Mayors and Governors Must Protect People From Armed Groups, Denounce White Supremacy


In response to the events of last week and in anticipation of more gatherings by white supremacists ahead of the inauguration, Amnesty International USA has sent a letter to 3,500 United States mayors and governors calling on them to protect people from armed groups and to denounce white supremacy.

Amnesty International USA has documented how racism, discrimination, and hate can lead to widespread violence and disregard for human rights  across the world for almost 60 years. In the United States, the lack of restriction on guns, combined with the embrace of white supremacists by the President and other government officials, continues to put the country at risk of further violence. Mayors and governors must take action now in order to keep their communities safe.

Amnesty International USA’s calls to mayors and governors include:

  • Publicly condemn and demand accountability for incitement to violence and the enabling and abetting of white supremacy at the highest levels of government, including by President Trump and other government officials
  • Publicly condemn armed groups and individuals as a threat to public safety and human rights, and speak out against white supremacy, discrimination, xenophobic rhetoric and incitement to violence by such groups and individuals
  • Issue executive orders, emergency orders, or other temporary special measures to prevent armed white supremacist individuals or groups from intimidating or threatening people
  • Temporarily prohibit the open and concealed carry of firearms in Capitol buildings and in public, including parks, recreational areas, religious institutions, and schools
  • Direct police departments to adopt and follow Amnesty International’s best practices on the policing of demonstrations, and ensure that all law enforcement agencies facilitate freedom of peaceful assembly, without discrimination, particularly in the context of volatile counter-protest situations, with commitments to ensuring transparent investigation and prosecution of unlawful use of force, and vigilantism by armed groups

Background and Context

Amnesty International USA is monitoring the situation and is deeply troubled by what is occurring in the country. The organization is calling on the mayors and governors to denounce white supremacists, prohibit firearms in Capitol Buildings and public spaces, and take special measures to keep communities safe from violence and armed intimidation by white supremacists.

Note: Amnesty International researchers are monitoring the situation at state capitols and on the ground in Washington, D.C. and are available for interviews


Amnesty International is a global movement of millions of people demanding human rights for all people – no matter who they are or where they are. We are the world’s largest grassroots human rights organization.

'Stark Betrayal': Biden Administration Floats New Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling

"This is the third time since November the Biden administration has announced new oil and gas leasing plans on the Friday before a holiday," said one climate advocate. "They're ashamed, and they should be."

Jake Johnson ·

As US Rolls Back Reproductive Rights, Sierra Leone Moves to Decriminalize Abortion

"I'm hopeful today's announcement gives activists in the U.S., and especially Black women given the shared history, a restored faith that change is possible and progress can be made."

Brett Wilkins ·

'Indefensible': Outrage as New Reporting Shines Light on Biden Deal With McConnell

The president has reportedly agreed to nominate an anti-abortion Republican to a lifetime judgeship. In exchange, McConnell has vowed to stop blocking two Biden picks for term-limited U.S. attorney posts.

Jake Johnson ·

Assange Makes Final Appeal Against US Extradition

"If Julian Assange is not free, neither are we," said a protester at a Friday demonstration against the WikiLeaks founder's impending transfer. "None of us is free."

Brett Wilkins ·

'Payoff for 40 Years of Dark Money': Supreme Court Delivers for Corporate America

"It was the conservative court's larger agenda to gut the regulatory state and decimate executive powers to protect Americans' health and safety," warned one expert.

Jake Johnson ·

Common Dreams Logo