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Thursday, 17 August 2017 22:02

What We Can Do After Charlottesville

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For those of us who were in Charlottesville on August 12th, nothing will ever be the same. We learned that is no such thing as "alt-right." We will never use that sanitized self-serving euphemism again. Instead, we will call these terrorists "Nazis," both because that is what they call themselves, and because that is what we saw in Charlottesville.

They came in support of ethnic cleansing, they came to create a white homeland, they came wearing swastikas, helmets and carrying semi-automatic weapons. At first glance you would mistake them for the National Guard until you saw the swastikas and Confederate flag insignias. The young ones carried sticks with sharpened points that they had made into spears; the night before they carried torches and shouted, "Heil Trump, blood and sand and you will not replace us" outside a church service. On Saturday morning they spit on clergy in full clerical dress to show their hatred. On Saturday afternoon they killed a young woman. The next day, they gloated and laughed about it, defiling her memory.  They announced that they're just getting started. They said they were glad that none of their people had been killed, and vowed that, "many more would die!"  ​ 

Last night I interviewed five (5) people that were in Charlottesville on August 12th: Eileen who was the medic hired by the clergy collective, Valerie who had a daughter at UVA, Marcello a political writer from the area and Jesse and Janette who were training local NAACP members on how to be non-violent in the face of violence.

Here are four things that you can do (some now and others in the future)

Sign petitions and work to remove all Confederate statues and symbols from your local communities. The great, great grandsons of Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and Jefferson Davis all agree that the statues of their ancestors belong in a museum--not in local communities. They believe that community statues should celebrate our great achievements, NOT the lowest moments in our history.​ According to Bobby Lee, great, great, grandson of General Lee, "Times were very different then. We look at the institution of slavery and its absolutely horrendous. Back then, times were just extremely different. We understand that it's complicated in 2017, when you look back at that period of time... If you want to put statues of General Lee or other Confederate people in museums, that makes good sense."

Remind your state ACLU that these Nazis are coming into communities to injure and kill people; this isn't about constitutionally protected free speech--something we agree must be protected.​ Do not defend their request for a permit to march or speak; they can speak on the radio or television.

Don't refer to them as "alt-right"; call them what they really are, Nazis. They wear and display Nazi insignia, regalia, and emblems. They openly proclaim they're seeking to achieve Nazi objectives. When they identify themselves as Nazis, believe them.​

We Need Federal and state legislation that says if you use your car as a weapon against protestors, you will go to jail for a very long time.; we should call it the Heather Heyer bill. If you kill someone with your car you will go to jail even longer; establish very strong mandatory minimum sentences. Work to defeat any legislation that enables people to run over protestors with no consequences (currently legislation in North Carolina defeated in Arizona and Florida).

We will be working with partners over the next few weeks to draft petitions and legislation. This impacts all of us; sitting on the sidelines is no longer an option.

#Charlottesville Radio Show (1:30)

Clergy Attacked in Charlottesville

HBO Vice News Documentary on Charlottesville

Robert E. Lee's Direct Descendant Denounces Events in Charlottesville

Pelosi urges removal of Confederate Statues from Capitol

Read 7262 times Last modified on Thursday, 17 August 2017 22:09
Andrea Miller

Andrea Miller, Co-Executive Director and IT Director, was the Democratic Nominee in 2008 for House of Representatives in the Virginia 4th District. Running on a Medicare for All and clean energy platform, Andrea was endorsed by PDA, California Nurses and The Sierra Club. Prior to running for office, Andrea was a part of Congressman Dennis Kucinich’s presidential campaign, first as Statewide Coordinator for Virginia and subsequently as Regional Coordinator. From 2006 until leading the VA Kucinich campaign Andrea was MoveOn.org’s Regional Coordinator for Central, Southwest and Hampton Roads areas of Virginia and West Virginia. Andrea is also the PDA Virginia co-chair as well as the Technical Director. Andrea co-hosts, organizes and programs PDA's Blog Talk Radio show. She is also the lead designer and production team leader for PDA's websites and printed materials. Andrea co-directs PDA's Capitol Hill letter drops and Hill meetings. Her problem-solving skills are essential to PDA's operations.

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