In the wake of violent demonstrations and domestic terrorism by the New Klan in Charlottesville this weekend, a chorus of voices have demanded that elected leaders condemn white supremacy and Nazi ideology. Some figures (Donald Trump, Corey Stewart) have fallen far short of the mark. But calling out Nazis is not enough. It is the bare minimum.
We must expect more from our leaders and elected officials than merely condemning Nazis. Racism does not only live in ugly marches and Tiki torch demonstrations. Intolerance isn’t only in someone else, from somewhere else. It lives here—in small actions and structures of power that treat people differently because of the color of their skin.
“Intolerance isn’t only in someone else, from somewhere else. Hate hides in corners; intolerance in uncomfortable conversations.”
Hate hides in corners; intolerance in uncomfortable conversations. It’s not always accompanied by a confederate flag or a Nazi salute. It’s easy to say, “hate has no home here.” It’s hard to mean it when that means more than calling out Nazis.
At Progress Virginia, we’re recommitting to meaning it. We’re committed to examining our language and our assumptions. We’re committed to listening to communities of color and lifting up their voices. We’re committed to working to advance racial equity in big ways and small. We’re committed to calling out the small things and changing our communities. Because we want to get to a place where there are no more Nazis to call out.
What can you do next?
Find and join your local chapter of Showing Up for Racial Justice.
Engage with the Movement for Black Lives.
Solidarity Cville has a great thread with ways to support local organizations and activists.