Monday, May 15, 2017

In which Charlottesville tells racists to piss off

You may have seen Charlottesville in the news over the weekend. That nazi weenie, Richard Spencer, (a UVA alum) came to town to push his white supremacist agenda and protest the proposed removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee in a local park. During the day, Spencer spoke to people who'd been bused here from as far as Ohio. His message is offensive, but we have freedom of assembly and the right to free speech in this country. Things got weird after dark, when they had a torchlight rally in the park.

Picture from Charlottesville's daily newspaper, the Daily Progress. Seriously, they're just missing their white hoods and a burning cross.

On Sunday, Jon got a text from our neighbor, about a second rally - a candlelight vigil to protest the white supremacists. We were told that news of this rally was to be spread by word of mouth, text, or email only. No social media sharing. Of course I had to attend, and I wondered just how many people would appear for an event that hadn't been officially advertised. Sunday nights in downtown Charlottesville are usually pretty quiet, but last night, lots of people were out on the street just before 9:00 pm, purposefully walking toward Lee Park. Of course it's hard to judge the size of a crowd when you're in it and it's dark, but I'd say we numbered in the hundreds. Many people brought their own candles and others were handing out candles to those of us who didn't think to bring one.

As with other protests I've been to in Charlottesville, I knew or recognized many in the crowd - people I know from work, our kids' schools, and our neighborhood. This was the real Charlottesville community unlike the bused-in alt-right crowd from Saturday.

Here are a few pictures that I took - obviously not great taken in the dark with a phone. I'm so glad that the Charlottesville community was able to get together and respond in this way to the white supremacists. And I'm grateful to our neighbor for letting us know about it.

The controversial statue in the background.

We definitely outnumbered the nazis.


  1. I got the text and shared it around, but we stayed home last night - we were a bit worried about altercations with nutjobs. Yes I know the good eggs outnumbered the bad last night, thankfully. My social media feeds are filled this morning with shots from the park last night - I recognize people from your shots. It was good to see so many turn out. It was a strong response to the misused tiki torches of the previous evening.

  2. Well done. Thank you. We must show them that they are not welcome anywhere on this planet.

  3. You know things are getting serious when this story shows up on The Daily Mail website, displacing very important and timely Kardashian news.