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How New Mayor is Handling the Charlottesville Anniversary

A+proud+gathering+of+counter-+protesters
A proud gathering of counter- protesters

A proud gathering of counter- protesters

A proud gathering of counter- protesters

Max Pulido

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It was one year ago that this nation was struck with one of its many tragedies at Charlottesville, Virginia. Last year in Charlottesville there was a “Unite the Right” rally, a rally represented and demonstrated by a gathering of individuals who support white supremacy and naturalism. The rally was interrupted by counter protesters and demonstrators with the same amount as rights who wanted to make a stand against the rally. The two gatherings of demonstrators quickly fed off of each others energy and views and a major altercation erupted. The rally ended with severely beaten individuals on both sides and the death of counter protester Heather Heyer. The death of Heather Heyer marked the tragedy of Charlottesville. Many activist and even Heather’s mother have claimed that her death will be remembered and was in the name of peace.

The then mayor of Charlottesville was white democrat Michael Signer who addressed the tragedy in a well respected manner and was present at the memorial service of Heather Heyer. However he did not run for re-election this year. Instead, the new mayor is Virginia’s first African-American democrat  Nikuyah Walker. Walker was originally Charlottesville’s City Councillor before being elected as the city’s new mayor. Walker has been described as an advocate for racial and social justice. She is determined to make Charlottesville a city full of hope and prosperity. For the upcoming anniversary Walker plans to prohibit the “Unite the Right” from having another rally in her city by denying them permits for the rally. But Walker and the city of Charlottesville are still preparing for the possibility of a violent outburst throughout the city but don’t want to dully view the event. The city of Charlottesville has declared a state of emergency before the anniversary as the city braces themselves for it. They hope that they’ll be able to prevent any violence through hard work to rebuild and strengthen their community.

Since the tragedy happened merely one year ago it should still be fresh within Hamilton’s mind which is why I went around to ask some students about Charlottesville. I asked around and got some well thought out responses. I asked questions such as Do you remember Charlottesville, How did it affect you, and Do you think that the city will be able to rebuild itself? When I asked student, Aili Wei (11), about Charlottesville this is what she had to say, “Yeah, I remember it”, “Yeah it affected me, knowing that an innocent person can get hurt from other people’s actions like that”, “I think they can rebound. They can learn from it and be aware of what those kind of people are capable of.” Mayor Walker also believes that the city can rebuild its image and learn from last year’s tragedy. Mayor Walker has said in an interview with National Public Radio, Inc while discussing her strong city, “Charlottesville’s a tough place. You know, that I tell people often that if you survive it, we have a lot of the same major issues that you hear about inner cities, and if you survive it, you’re doing well.” Mayor Walker has exclaimed deeply on how she believes her and her community can better Charlottesville and remove the stain left from last year but just because they are shameful of last year, they will not forget and use that memory to better themselves.   

The date of the tragic and devastating rally is August 12.The “Unite the Right” rally will be held in D.C. instead of Charlottesville due to their inability and denial of a permit in Charlottesville. One year after her daughter’s death, Susan Bro and many others still remember and honor Heather’s early ended life and what kind of legacy she left. Walker and her city are prepared to establish that they are ready and inviting to change. The people are too prepared to counter protest the “Unite the Right” rally if they choose to demonstrate their outdated and wrongful views.     

     

 

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How New Mayor is Handling the Charlottesville Anniversary