Below, please find a statement from Dr. Valerie Roberson on the recent events in Charlottesville, VA.
Over the weekend, we watched the terrifying events in Charlottesville unfold at a dizzying pace. The initial hateful march of white supremacists and neo-Nazi's carrying torches on the grounds of a peaceful campus elicited memories of the days of Civil Rights—a saga in our nation's history that we thought had long past. The protests the next day, and the horrifying image of a car ramming full speed into a crowd of peaceful counter-protesters was just as terrifying. I'm sure we all watched with the same sense of fear, remorse, and helplessness.
Now, in the aftermath of these horrific events, we face the threat of a similar gathering of hate mongers on our Boston Commons; a location in our city which has always been synonymous with freedom, democracy, liberation, and pride.
I applaud our Governor and Mayor for announcing to the world in a unified voice that white supremacists, neo-Nazis and other groups which espouse hate and discrimination are not welcome in the city of Boston. I take this opportunity to echo those sentiments.
I'm proud to live in this city and to work in Roxbury—a community that's stood at the forefront of civil rights for decades. And I remain, now more than ever, resolute in the College's commitment to provide a nurturing environment, where all community members are welcome.
My hope is that we use the events of the past few days as a rallying point—as a College community, and as citizens of Greater Boston—to take a stand against our enemies who combat progress and praise oppression. Now, more than ever, we must stand firm against hate and support one another.
Those of you interested in supporting a message of unity and peace can find a list of gatherings of the like-minded here. I encourage you to have your voices heard peacefully, and in unison, over the coming days.
I'll keep you updated as we plan events at the College that address the important issues we are facing today. In the interim, stay strong, and know that RCC will always be a safe and welcoming place.
Valerie Roberson, Ph.D.
President, Roxbury Community College