Charlottesville Horror

Printed from: http://newbostonpost.com/2017/08/12/charlottesville-horror/

Is our country coming apart?

The video scenes of a car driven by an apparent white racist into a crowd of counterprotesters in Charlottesville, Virginia and then backing out again are sickening and horrifying. 

White racists calling themselves “white nationalists” started protesting in Charlottesville on Friday night, apparently drawn by efforts to remove Confederate monuments. They drew counterprotesters, and the two groups clashed. But there weren’t any serious injuries then.

On Saturday the ugliness turned horrific, when a driver in a car without license plates was waved through a barrier by police officers who apparently thought he was a cop. The driver floored the car into a crowd of counterprotesters, striking pedestrians. As of mid-afternoon Saturday, authorities say one person has died and 19 are injured.

Several points come to mind:

1.

Let’s pray for the victims and their loved ones. If you’re a believer reading this, please stop what you’re doing and say a prayer. 

2.

Let’s be thankful for the cops, who are in places most of us wouldn’t want to be. Imagine how many deaths and injuries there would be if they weren’t there.

In the aftermath of this terrible event in Charlottesville, we may learn that certain police officers made mistakes. If so, they should be corrected. But they pale in comparison to the vital role police are playing in limiting the extent of the damage.

3.

Let’s stop imagining that there’s a viable political movement that supports so-called white nationalism.

These people exist, obviously. But they are not a serious political movement. They have nothing to do with President Donald Trump’s victory last November, which occurred because white swing voters in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin who previously voted for Barack Obama twice went for Donald Trump this time. These people made a political decision, not a racial decision.

President Donald Trump has as much to do with these so-called white nationalists in southern Virginia as former President Barack Obama has to do with the leftist who shot up the Republican Congressional baseball team practice in northern Virginia on June 14:  Nothing.

4.

Let’s reject hate, and let’s try to respond to hate with love.

As President Trump said during a press conference Saturday afternoon:

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence — on many sides. On many sides. It’s been going on for a long time in this country. Not Donald Trump. Not Barack Obama.”

But condemnation of evil isn’t enough to bind up the wounds of a nation. It takes more.

Trump said he spoke to Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe – a Democrat and longtime Clinton ally — on the telephone, “and we agreed that the hate and the division must stop, and must stop right now. We have to come together as Americans with love for our nation … and really, I say this so strongly, true affection for each other.”

That means affection not only for people we agree with, but for people we don’t.

“We have to respect each other,” Trump said. “Ideally, we have to love each other.”

 

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