ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - "This can destroy a country, this can destroy democracy," said Eliminate Racism 815 Member Harlan Johnson.
Johnson believes the government should use its diverse congress as a tool to work through big issues.
"Unless you have people of color to help educate you are not going to know enough to eliminate racism," Johnson said.
But Rockford University Professor Bob Evans says right now that isn't happening.
"If I can find a label that marks you as a bad person that's what I’m going to pick, not your position on Medicare," Evans said.
Evans is referring to a Facebook post shared by the Illinois Republican County Chairman's Association calling the four freshman congresswomen the ‘Jihad Squad'.
"To Muslims jihad is a broader term than a violent attack, but to non-Muslims, that’s what it means," Evans said.
Evans says these women also play a role in racism because of the way they look at America.
"These congresswomen have all said things that were quite controversial because they believe our history is primarily a history of shame to be overcome,” Evans said.
Meantime, the Trump Administration's take according to Evans is America’s a great country that needs to fix a few things.
"I keep thinking of people standing on opposite sides of the Grand Canyon just shouting at each other,” Evans said.
Evans believes someone needs to step up and bridge the gap at a national level, just like Johnson says he’s trying to do locally.
"Our groups are action groups that are going to erase racism eventually," Johnson said.