Yesterday, our nation’s president excused white nationalism, and cast equal blame on white supremacists and the “alt-left” for violence that occurred in Charlottesville, VA this past weekend.
EROC is proud to be a bipartisan organization. Our mission of ending sexual violence is one that belongs to and benefits our whole society, not a single political party or platform. Moreover, our mission of ending sexual violence cannot and will not be achieved without the eradication of all systems of oppression, including and especially racism. In that spirit, it must be stated that hatred and bigotry do not have two sides, and “both sides” are not at fault for the violence that took place this past weekend.
As an anti-violence, civil rights organization, we refuse to remain silent and let recent white supremacist and anti-Semitic acts go unnamed. We mourn for the loss of life and injury over the weekend, and for the daily reality of racism in our country. We denounce bigotry, white nationalism, and hate in all forms, hooded and unveiled. We recognize that such racism and violence is not new, and unfortunately acts of this past weekend were not surprising. Even so, we still must hold the highest levels of our nation’s government accountable for their role in emboldening hate and inciting violence.
We stand with the students at the University of Virginia, with faith community leaders, and all of those who protest bigotry, and we will continue to lift up their voices. The indifference UVA showed in 2015 towards its African American students after a racially motivated attack is the same indifferent reaction the UVA administration displayed in response to the white supremacist march that ended in violence on its campus last Friday. It is not enough to pay lip service and simply denounce overt racism; anyone who denounces racism must also actively engage in anti-racist work. We will continue to name and dismantle all systematic inequalities from the bold faced racism we witnessed this weekend from Klu-Klux-Klan, neo-Nazis, and other hate groups as well as discrimination, prejudice, microaggressions and other subtler forms of daily racism.
At EROC, we proclaim that Black Lives Matter, and we recognize that we cannot fulfill our organization’s mission of ending sexual violence in educational settings in a vacuum. Per our mission, End Rape on Campus will continue to fight for the eradication of systems of oppression, and speak out against white supremacy — even when the President of the United States will not.
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End Rape on Campus (EROC) is a national survivor-led nonprofit dedicated to ending gender based violence on college campuses through survivor support, prevention through education, and policy advocacy. You can learn more at www.endrapeoncampus.org.