I would like to make what I hope is my last post on this before I try to go forward with my life after this weekend.
I'm seeing a lot of posts about "both sides" and "all around violence." Not one single person who was actually there has said this. You know why? Because we saw it. We were there. We aren't relying on heavily edited and, in some cases, biased media footage.
We did not show up to fight. We did not show up to give them attention. Our "side" is not buying bus tickets and coordinating carpools from out of state to invade other people's hometowns. Our "side" did not hide caches of weapons at specific drop points around someone else's town. Our "side" did not gather together in groups specifically in minority neighborhoods to terrorize the residents while brandishing weapons and shields.
Our "side" showed up to say NO MORE. No more turning our heads. No more looking at news footage and sighing and shaking our heads and saying "such a shame in 2017." And yes, some of us ended up fighting. Some of us bled, and some of us went home with someone else's blood on us.
The video documentary going around that I posted shows an incredibly pleased, smug, triumphant white supremacist who declared this weekend a victory for them. He promised more rallies. He gleefully promised more deaths. If that is not worth showing up to condemn, then I don't know what is.
Yesterday I walked in a small group of other people to Heather Heyer's memorial. As we approached a neighborhood, we came upon a house with two black girls playing in the front yard. One was perhaps six years old. She froze and called to us "Are you KKK people?" as the other little girl ran inside. I responded "No honey, we aren't going to hurt you."
A little girl. In her own yard, in daylight. That is why we showed up. And that is why we will continue to show up.
I'd like to sincerely thank everyone for such an amazing outpouring of support and love the last few days. I'm humbled by your words and honored with your friendship. Love and light will win.
EDIT: In response to the president's comments, I have made this post public. Also, the president claims that the counterprotestors did not have permits, while the alt-right did. Fake news. We had two. My husband Nathan was one of the permit holders for McGuffey Park that day. Thank you.