There has been a lot of discussion about the events surrounding Charlotsville Alt-Right/White Supremacist/Nazi gathering last weekend. The conflict of gatherings of the White supremacists--supposedly protesting the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue--and counter-protester--protesting the inherent racism of the WS philosophy--was quite upsetting to most Americans on many levels because of the violence that occurred and the rhetoric that was spouted. Some of the opinions that have come out of it are interesting and diverse. I'd like to very briefly mention and add my input to 3 of those narratives.

Narrative 1:

"They should be allowed to save their piece according to the 1st amendment." Here is the text of the 1st amendment: "Amendment I. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

The question is, were the neo-Nazis provoking violence by carrying automatic weapons, nazi shirts and flags? My opinion is that yes, they were trying to provoke violence. In fact, they committed violence in almost beating De'Andre Harris to death next to the police station. For details, here is an article from the LA Times: Harris Beaten
A counter-protester, was killed when James Alex Fields, Jr. ran his vehicle into a group of the counter protesters injuring 19 and killing Heather Heyer.

Narrative 2:

"If the alt right protestors are considered a terrorist group, what about Black Lives Matter."

The fundamental difference between the two is that the white supremacists espouse separitism, racial discrimination, and extermination of "inferior races" including Jews, African-Americans, and all other non-whites, while BLM is a social justice organization promoting equality.

Narrative 3:

"We should keep the Confederate monuments as a historical reminder of events surrounding the civil war."

Germany removed as many reminders of WWII as they possibly could as an admission of "yes, we screwed up, we're sorry, we don't want to remind those who lost loved ones of those tragic times." And they certainly didn't enshrine those who committed the war crimes of that horrible war.

And while most of the German war criminals were forced into self-exile, or tried, jailed, or executed (or allowed to "escape" into various other countries such as the US for "strategic" purposes), the traitors of the confederacy were given what amounted to slaps on the wrist and allowed back into public life, including politics. Robert E. Lee himself was a supporter of discarding the statues, flags, and other confederate monuments after he conceded defeat. Robert E. Lee on Confedrate Monuments

Please consider that racial oppression is still a fact in the US, despite laws against it. These monuments and flags that were put up during times of racial strife in the 1920s and 1950s are symbols of hatred to African Americans. Would you want to be reminded of the evil of racism every time you drove by a public building? I don't think anyone would.

Truth from Don Lemon

This event in Charlotesville has given America much to think about.