Youth Caucus of America is devastated and horrified by the violence, hatred, and bigotry surrounding the “Unite the Right” rally taking place in the city of Charlottesville in Virginia. The “Unite the Right” demonstration is a protest against the planned removal of a statue of civil war general Robert F. Lee in Charlottesville. However, the rally and events leading up to it have been marked by the presence of racist white nationalist groups and individuals. Reports of chants such as “Jew will not replace us” and “White lives matter” coming from white nationalists in Charlottesville are divisive and profoundly disturbing. Clashes between protesters and counter-protesters armed with shields and batons have reportedly led to 15 people being injured. This morning, the Charlottesville Police Department reported a car ramming into a densely packed crowd of individuals protesting the rally, killing one and injuring 19 other individuals. The disorder and fighting that has engulfed the protests and counter-protests have forced the governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, to declare a state of emergency.
Youth Caucus of America does not condone the violent acts and the divisive rhetoric being used in Charlottesville. We hope for the safety of those currently in Charlottesville.