Last Summer, during a tense time of racial upheaval, I lent my voice to the national debate about race and equality. A little over a year later, I find myself compelled to insert my thoughts into another racially charged conversation currently taking place in America. A conversation discussing alt-right groups and those who oppose their message of racism.
The recent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, while not the first of its kind, grabbed the attention of the country. While such marches have been increasing, counter-protesting them have escalated also.
Just as black lives matter too, so do free speech rights of groups who think minorities are inferior to white nationalism. If we are to move forward towards just equality and understanding, these two truths must lead our thinking.
Whites morally against racism should not be complicit by ignoring actions occurring in our country
There has to be no doubt racism against minorities still exists; realization has to set in broadly. It is not enough to just realize it though. Inactions must become actions to ensure proper substantiation of equality for minorities.
People who are not of color living in America may never understand particular prejudices experienced by way of racial discrimination. Regardless, these individuals have to ask themselves, “What am I doing to actively advance equality and racial justice of oppressed minorities?”
American minorities have to resort to nonviolence in the face of racism and inequality
In communities of color and minorities across America, peaceful resistance and protest should guide movements. Hatred due to race will exist for generations to come. Hating that hatred is reasonable in thought and understood, but what benefit is it when it grows into violent clashes?
No benefit at all. When counter-protesters for equality come equipped with weapons implying a readiness to fight alt-right demonstrators, it allows those racists to act as legitimate victims of having their first amendment rights violated.
In the context of constitutional law, the nature of hate laced speech is not an exemption from assembling peacefully. As long as there is no looting, murder, and crime, the values of American rights are obliged to be upheld and bigoted alt-right groups shall be allowed to have their hateful marches. While they rally for hate, vast majorities of Americans should show resistance through nonviolent movements.
Movements denouncing violence and keeping hotheads bound for recklessness out of peaceful demonstrations. Movements evoking the very best of America’s ideals and spirit. Spirited ideals which have built a governing system able to withstand and repel waves of undemocratic values and rule.
As Americans searching for equality…
We gained independence from a monarchy, broke the back of slavery and Jim Crow, liberated women and blacks from second class citizenship, and spearheaded the unity of nations.
Let bigots demonstrate what they’ll never stop representing. Groups earnestly striving for increased equality and unity should make certain their opposition is in peaceful action and ideology. Don’t be quiet by any stretch of the democratic imagination, but please don’t allow violence to further incite hatred and give racism any type of credibility and validation that garners attention for and attracts involvement to bigotry.