Overcoming hate: Celebrate our differences

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Photo by LeadToday

James Hill
CONTRIBUTOR

We all come from different walks of life, yet we are equally human.

We have different morals, different ethical codes, different life experiences and different faiths or non-faith. Some of us may have had an easy upbringing while others had to fight tooth and nail to get where they are now. For some of us, high school was a breeze. For others, it was hell due to our uniqueness or whom we loved. We are all different, but we are all equal.

We were all reminded of the cruelty and malice of those who think otherwise on Aug. 11 and 12.

Members of the “alt-right”; also called neo-Nazis, Klansmen, white nationalists, white supremacists, nationalists or racists; marched on Charlottesville, Virginia to protest the removal of a statue of a traitor, General Robert E. Lee. The neo-Nazis protested with their torches, swastikas and Confederate flags held high, proudly doing the Nazi salute while chanting “We will not be erased!”, “Blood and soil.”, “We will not be replaced!”, “Jews will not replace us!” and “Heil Trump!”

This “peaceful” Nazi protest turned violent when it met with counter protesters.

On Aug. 11, neo-Nazis hit some of the counter protesters with their Wal-Mart tiki torches during a very heated exchange of “White Lives Matter” and “Black Lives Matter.” The counter protesters retaliated with mace.

The animosity increased the next day.

The chants turned into blows. Neo-Nazi James Fields drove his car into a crowd of people leaving one dead and 19 wounded.

Fields was arrested and charged with second degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and failing to stop at an accident that resulted in a death.

Unsurprisingly, neo-Nazis found the events at Charlottesville to be extremely productive.

“I would say it was worth it,” Christopher Cantwell, a speaker for the group “Unite the Right,” said during the VICE News documentary “Charlottesville: Race and Terror.” “We knew that we were going to meet a lot of resistance. The fact that no one on our side died, I’ll go ahead and call that points for us. The fact that none of our people killed anyone unjustly I think is a plus for us. And I think that we showed our rivals that we won’t be cowed.”

Cantwell says it is the protesters fault that Fields ran into the crowd.

“The video appears to show someone striking that vehicle,” Cantwell said. “When those animals attack him again and he saw no way to get away from them except to hit the gas and, sadly, because our rivals are a bunch of stupid animals that don’t pay attention, they could just get out of the way of his car
and some people got hurt. That’s unfortunate…I think it was more than justified.”

Cantwell stated the neo-Nazis showed an incredible amount of restraint during the rally.

Neo-Nazis act this way because they believe their main source of their pride, their ethnicity, is being threatened.

It is pathetic if one’s heroes and idols are some of history’s worst losers, one of which was a traitor to his country.

We are more than the color of our skin. We are more than choice of faith or non-faith. We are more than our nationality. We are free-thinking individuals.

We share our ideas and thoughts in open-minded discussions. We listen to opinions that are different than ours without responding with violence. Some of us may look at the majestic mountains; the vast and open sea and the roaming, grass prairies and be struck in awe by the world’s beauty. Others will believe something so beautiful can only be crafted by a greater power.

Some of us are realists while others are dreamers. Some of us organize every second of every day while others just go with the flow. Our differences do not matter though.

To quote Nelson Mandela, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

This is true for all of us because we are all human.

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