Rally Sparks Reflection On Race, Equality In Charlottesville

By Sarah Rankin, Associated Press

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A white nationalist rally that turned violent has forced Charlottesville residents to confront the ugly realities of racism, bigotry and inequality lurking beneath the charming veneer of their progressive college town.

In the weeks since the rally, where a woman protesting was hit by a car and killed, anger has erupted at local officials about how they responded to the violence. But at a recent City Council meeting, a press conference and a Sunday town hall, residents have also expressed concerns about broader, long-standing issues.

“This racism, this is nothing new to Charlottesville,” said Daniel Thompson, an Army veteran whose voice rose as he spoke at the Sunday afternoon meeting billed as a first step in the city’s recovery effort. “This is what us black residents have gone through our entire lives,” he said to cheers and applause.

Thompson went on to say that the city had bigger problems than the Confederate monument that sparked the rally on Aug. 12. Chief among them, he and many others at the meeting said, was the cost of housing. Others speakers pointed to a deep mistrust of police among black community members. Some called for better community mental health services; …read more

Source:: Black America Web

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