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Why We Cannot Just Forget About Charlottesville

The events that unfolded in Charlottesville, Va., on Friday, August 18 and Saturday, August 19, cannot be forgotten. Somebody f*cking died. Several people were injured. Neo-Nazis and KKK members proudly chanted Nazi slogans. The President of the United States blamed the aforementioned protesters as well as the counter-protesters for the violence that occurred.

Amidst all of this, in the last seven days, the word ‘eclipse’ was searched on Google far more than the word ‘Charlottesville’.

In the last week, during conversation, which of the two have you spoken about more – Deandre Harris, the young black man brutally beaten by white supremacists with metal poles, or where to purchase the correct glasses to protect your eyes while watching the eclipse?

Deandre Harris, 20, had to have eight staples put in his head, following the assault. He suffered a concussion, a broken wrist, and a chipped tooth. No arrests have been made, and Deandre says he is still receiving death threats from white supremacists online. Did you know his name five minutes ago?

White people everywhere were “shocked” by the events that took place. Among them is Giants outfielder Jarrett Parker, who says, “The whole thing is pretty shocking and absurd to me.” Why? Why is any of this shocking to anyone? White liberals across the nation are astounded that Nazis and KKK members exist, despite the fact that their relatives still call black people n*ggers at the dinner table.

People of color have been saying we need change for centuries, and people instead chose to believe racism was dead until now. The sad part is, some still do.

We cannot forget about Charlottesville. We can’t make jokes about it for a few laughs, or scroll past commentary on it, or pretend it didn’t happen. The effects of it are still happening, and will continue to happen, all around us. We need to keep the discussion going. We need to talk about it. 

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Jasmine Hart
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Jasmine Hart is a staff writer for Affinity Magazine and is based in Minnesota.

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