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Jacksonville Clergy Respond to Hate and Violence in Charlottesville


August 14, 2017


Michelle Nealy, mnealy@faithinpubliclife.org, (202)735-7123

Joey McKinnon, jmckinnon@faithinpubliclife.org, (843)-364-4403

Jacksonville Clergy Respond to Hate and Violence in Charlottesville

Jacksonville, Fla — On Saturday, August 12th, counter-protesters at a “Unite the Right” rally of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., were mowed down by a driver. Vigils and rallies sprang up throughout Florida, like the interfaith vigil at Istanbul Cultural Center in Jacksonville, as faith leaders called for an end to violent and hate-filled actions.

Chaplain Matt Hartley, Episcopal Campus Ministry, Jacksonville, FL:

“Courageous faith stood against hate this weekend in Charlottesville. As terror marched, I was deeply moved by sisters and brothers of different traditions who stood together to proclaim that white supremacy will not win. I knew that I had to stand with them in solidarity, only moreso after the heartbreaking murder of Heather Heyer, whose grandparents are members of the church I grew up in. I am committed to the long haul transformation of society through dismantling white supremacy.” 

Rev. Phillip Baber, Unitarian Universalist Church of Jacksonville:

“In the face of great evil such as we recently saw in Charlottesville, we people of faith have a single choice: resist! Anything less is collusion. This includes defending acts of white supremacy and white terrorism through minimizing its effects, citing false equivalencies, or appealing to the First Amendment. History will judge all that we say and do in the coming days. History will also judge all that we leave unsaid and undone. Silence and inaction in the face of such evil is complicity and cowardice. Love demands the denunciation and dismantling of all forms of white supremacy. And any religion that refuses to take part in this sacred work will ultimately fade from history, in large part due to the utter moral insignificance of its continued existence.”


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