I urge you to watch the short documentary above. But I warn you, it’s very disturbing. Below I list some quotations from the 22 minute video on the Charlottesville horror. These people were in Charlottseville when they made their comments.
Christopher Cantwell, white supremacist leader:
- “We’ll fucking kill these people if we have to.”
- Referring to the driver who ran over counter protestors: “They couldn’t just get out of his way, and some people got hurt.”
- “I think a lot more people are going to die before we’re done here, frankly.”
- “I’d say it was worth it.”
- “I’m trying to make myself more capable of violence.”
- “I don’t think you could feel about race like I do and watch that Kushner bastard walk around with that beautiful girl. Okay.”
David Duke, former Imperial Wizard of the KKK:
- “We’re talking about the ethnic cleansing of America.”
- After Trump’s initial and subsequent remarks, David Duke even thanked Trump for his support.
Chants from the Nazis and White Supremacists included:
- “Jews will not replace us.”
- “Blood and soil!”
- “Whose streets? Our streets.”
- “White lives matter.”
Chants from the people in Charlottesville included:
- “No Nazis. No KKK. No fascist USA!”
- “Black lives matter.”
As everyone now knows, one of the Nazis/White Supremacists, James, 20 years old, drove to Charlottesville, was photographed with a shield bearing a white supremacist emblem just hours before he allegedly rammed his car at high speed into the counter-protestors injuring a significant number of people and killing Heather Heyer. This interview with Heather’s mother is heart wrenching.
Donald Trump’s Combative Remarks to Reporters
- Were delayed by 2 days
- Blamed both sides without mentioning the KKK, White Supremacists, or Neo-Nazis
- Said there were good people there to protest the removal of the civil war statue
- Equated the statues of Civil War leaders with the statue of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson
- Had not reached out to the mother of Heather Heyer when asked but said he was going to.1
- Later clearly denounced the violence of the KKK, White Supremacists, and Neo-Nazis by name but then went back to blaming both sides and has never denounced these organizeations again
- CNN has posted 14 of the most shocking comments made by Trump about the horrific incident. It’s worth the read.
- Trump tweeted, “Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments.”2
Mike Pence supports his boss—yet again.
Pence was in Columbia. Pence stated that he “stands with the President” who blamed both sides and thereby indirectly supports these hate groups. While he stands with the president (another source), the full text of his scripted comments in Columbia considerably amplifies (actually changes if you ask me) the meaning of his boss’ shared blaming.
Pence is certainly a more polished and clever speaker. He knows not to fight battles you can not win. He knows how to publicly appear compassionate. These are skills his boss appears to completely lack, and in order to take his boss’ job, he needs to carefully position himself as a kind, healing salve.3
White House Chief Strategist’s Strategy
Steve Bannon attempts to deflect the support Trump gave the extremists by giving an interview he claimed was off the record in which he called members of the hate groups “clowns” and “losers.” Remember, Bannon is the White House Chief Strategist and is incredibly media savvy. Before accepting that position, Bannon was the former “executive chair of Breitbart News, a far-right[i] news, opinion, and commentary website which he described in 2016 as “the platform for the alt-right“.
Bannon knew exactly what he was doing. In my opinion this was carefully timed and a calculated move to deflect. Rumor is out that he is out of a job. Is this yet another diversionary tactic: blame the hate groups on Bannon? And, certainly, the former(?) White House Chief Strategist got people to stop talking about Russia! And the latest in the news cycle suggests Republicans are feeling better about Putin.
No matter how detestable I may think Bannon is, he’s astonishingly good at media manipulation. Sacrificing himself as the ultimate token of his loyalty to Trump? Damn!
CEO’s in the business community were so disturbed by the way Trump handled the murderous rampage in Charlottesville, they began resigning in significant numbers from Trump’s Business Council. To save face from the embarrassment, Trump disbanded the group as well as the Strategy and Policy Forum, which was also beginning to fall apart.
You can find more details at Trump’s Business Councils Dissolve After CEOs Turn Against Him. Sadly, however, business leaders, not faith leaders, are the ones taking the moral high ground over Trump’s damaging response to the actions of far right hate groups.
While I believe every member of Trump’s Faith Council should have immediately resigned, as of this writing, none have done so. These are those who serve on the Faith Council:
Michele Bachmann – Former Congresswoman
A.R. Bernard – Senior Pastor and CEO, Christian Cultural Center
Mark Burns – Pastor, Harvest Praise and Worship Center
Tim Clinton – President, American Association of Christian Counselors
Kenneth and Gloria Copeland – Founders, Kenneth Copeland Ministries
James Dobson – Author, Psychologist and Host, My Family Talk
Jerry Falwell, Jr. – President, Liberty University
Ronnie Floyd – Senior Pastor, Cross Church
Jentezen Franklin – Senior Pastor, Free Chapel
Jack Graham – Senior Pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church
Harry Jackson – Senior Pastor, Hope Christian Church
Robert Jeffress – Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of Dallas
David Jeremiah – Senior Pastor, Shadow Mountain Community Church
Richard Land – President, Southern Evangelical Seminary
James MacDonald – Founder and Senior Pastor, Harvest Bible Chapel
Johnnie Moore – Author, President of The KAIROS Company
Robert Morris – Senior Pastor, Gateway Church
Tom Mullins – Senior Pastor, Christ Fellowship
Ralph Reed – Founder, Faith and Freedom Coalition
James Robison – Founder, Life OUTREACH International
Tony Suarez – Executive Vice President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference
Jay Strack – President, Student Leadership University
Paula White – Senior Pastor, New Destiny Christian Center
Tom Winters – Attorney, Winters and King, Inc.
Sealy Yates – Attorney, Yates and Yates
Shame, shame, shame on people of faith…
Click here for photos from Charlottesville.
CNN reports: “I’m not talking to the President now,” Susan Bro [Heather’s mother] said Friday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” “I’m sorry. After what he said about my child, and it’s not that I saw somebody else’s tweets about him. I saw an actual clip of him at a press conference equating the protesters like Ms. (Heather) Heyer with the KKK and the white supremacists.” ↩
He didn’t seem to care at all about the removal of beautiful statues when he knocked down the art deco work on the Bonwit building and built Trump Tower. ↩
His remarks, in full, from the White House website: “With regard to yesterday, what happened in Charlottesville was a tragedy. Charlottesville, Virginia is a beautiful community, a university town with a rich heritage. President Santos’s son just graduated from the University of Virginia, and the President himself spoke on that campus.
And what occurred there, as local and state officials have said, is in no way a reflection of the good and decent people of Charlottesville or of America.
Of what happened there — yesterday, President Trump clearly and unambiguously condemned the bigotry, violence, and hatred which took place on the streets of Charlottesville.
Our hearts go out to the victims of violence that ensued; the family of the young woman who lost her life; of the families of the two police officers who fell in the line of duty, and all of those that are injured.
We have no tolerance for hate and violence, from white supremacists, neo-Nazis, or the KKK. These dangerous fringe groups have no place in American public life and in the American debate, and we condemn them in the strongest possible terms.
The President also made clear that behavior by others of different militant perspectives are also unacceptable in our political debate and discourse. Our administration is bringing the full resources of the Department of Justice to investigate and prosecute those responsible for the violence that ensued yesterday in Charlottesville. And we will hold them to account, under the law.
The President’s call for unity yesterday, though, was from the heart. It was a sincere call, in these too divided times in our country, for those on the extremes to be dismissed, and for the vast majority of Americans who cherish freedom, who cherish justice for all, to come together in new and in renewed ways.
I will say I take issue with the fact that many in the national media spent more time criticizing the President’s words than they did criticizing those who perpetrated the violence to begin with.
We should be putting the attention where it belongs, and that is on these extremist groups that need to be pushed out of the public debate entirely, and discredited for the hate groups and dangerous fringe groups that they are.
The truth, as President Santos knows, is, the overwhelming majority of Americans, I would say, with very few exceptions, cherish the values that are at the foundation of our nation. They’re the shared values that we have with the people of Colombia.
And in the aftermath of yesterday’s violence, and on this Sunday here in Colombia, I think it’s a good time to pray — to pray for those who lost their lives yesterday; to pray for their families; to pray for the injured; but also to pray for greater unity in America that I believe will come. We can seize this moment, as President Trump said yesterday, as a moment where we stop, where we pause, and where we move forward together. ↩