FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday, August 11, 2018
You Will Not Defeat Us
A statement by Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.
An American hero, Heather Heyer is never far from my thoughts, my prayers and my gratitude for her service to our country.
A year has passed since she was killed in Charlottesville, Virginia when neo-Nazis, Klansmen and other white supremacists invaded the city, chanting, “Jews will not replace us.”
Heather died standing up for love over hate, justice over oppression, inclusion and equality over racism and anti-Semitism.
There was a time when racism, as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., put it, was “the black man’s burden and the white man’s shame.” For far too many these days, the white man’s shame is a source of pride, arrogance and danger.
On Sunday – a year to the day that Heather was mowed down by a neo-Nazi, using his car as a weapon – hundreds of white supremacists are expected to descend on Washington, D.C. to hold another “Unite the Right” rally, this time across the street from the White House.
The audacity of racists. They feel empowered and protected by the White House. It’s no wonder. President Trump has encouraged their vile and aggressive behavior.
Since the tragedy in Charlottesville, children, as a matter of government policy, have been swept from the arms of their parents and put in cages. Since Charlottesville, Trump has referred to African nations as “s-hole countries.” Since Charlottesville, he has used sincere, nonviolent protests by African-American football players and other athletes as a weapon of mass division. Since Charlottesville, Trump has done nothing to heal the breach.
We owe it to Heather – and to the two Virginia state police troopers, Berke Bates and H. Jay Cullen, who also died that day – to continue the nonviolent fight against bigotry. We cannot sit on the sidelines as racism again finds a comfort zone.
We must register and vote in massive numbers for the midterm elections on Nov. 6 and send a loud and clear message to the racists, haters and their enablers: Never again.
There are too many of us – black, white, red, brown and yellow, Jewish, Muslim and Christian, gay and straight.
We are what American looks like.
You will not defeat us.
Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi-racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.