White House tries to stem fallout from Trump's remarks

Lester Mason
August 14, 2017

Heyer is being widely saluted as a hero, someone who lost their life in pursuit of one of the simplest yet most unsafe causes out there―standing up against violent white supremacy, and standing in solidarity with people of color and historically oppressed groups.

Jason Kessler, the organizer of the "Unite the Right" white nationalist rally that turned deadly Saturday, called a press conference Sunday afternoon to address the previous day's events, but was quickly chased off by protesters. It is planned that after it, a march along the city's central streets will be held in solidarity with Charlottesville where violence erupted at a far right rally.

The group marched ahead of the rally in Charlottesville on Saturday.

Authorities in Charlottesville, Va., were investigating a day after a rally of neo-Nazis, white nationalists, and Ku Klux Klan members erupted into deadly violence, including a vehicle that rammed into a march of counter-protesters, killing a 32-year-old woman. In a statement police say they observed some people in the counter protest carrying axe handles and two-by fours-as they infiltrated the hundreds of peaceful demonstrators.

James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of OH was arrested and charged with second-degree murder for the crash. Heather Heyer, 32, was killed and 19 others were injured. Fields could also face federal charges, depending on the outcome of the FBI's investigation.

"Once you talked to James for a while, you would start to see that sympathy towards Nazism, that idolization of Hitler, that belief in white supremacy", Weimer said.

The "on many sides" emphasized at the ending drew the ire of his critics, who pushed back on his statement as failing to specifically denounce racism and equating the white supremacists with those who came to protest their hate.

"He should use this opportunity today to say this is terrorism, this is domestic terrorism, this is white nationalism, and it has to stop", Sen.

In Atlanta, the anti-hate demonstration was calmer: the activists carried banners saying "We are not afraid" and "This is what democracy looks like".

The White House issued a statement saying the president does condemn "white supremacists, KKK, neo-nazi and all extremist groups". He did not specify when. Nineteen people were hospitalized.

"We anticipated this event being the largest white supremacist gathering in over a decade", Segal said.

Oren Segal, who directs the Anti-Defamation League's Center on Extremism, said multiple white power groups gathered in Charlottesville, including members of neo-Nazi organizations, racist skinheads and KKK factions.

The rally stemmed from a long debate in the U.S. South over the Confederate battle flag and other symbols of the rebel side in the Civil War, which was fought over slavery.

"I blame Donald Trump 100 per cent because he emboldened all these people to incite hate, and they are now promoting violence and killing", Ms Rubenstein said.

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides", he said.

"This is what happens when you give White Supremacy a pass".

The president's homeland security adviser, Tom Bossert, defended the president's initial statement by suggesting that some of the counter-protesters were violent, too. "It's not meant not to condemn hate".

Your move, President Trump.

Deborah Anderson, a 52-year-old schoolteacher and member of the congregation, said seeing protesters wielding clubs reopened wounds for those who remember racial segregation enshrined in law.

Officials have not provided a crowd estimate, but there appeared to be at least 500 people supporting the rally sparked by Charlottesville's decision to remove a Confederate monument. Torch-wielding white nationalists also demonstrated in May against the removal.

Meanwhile, Gov. Cuomo urged New Yorkers to sign a petition asking Trump to denounce white supremacists.

The pilot, 48-year-old Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen of Midlothian, and 40-year-old Trooper-Pilot Berke M.M. Bates of Quinton, died at the scene.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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