Saturday morning my daughter and I sat on a park bench watching Andrew play on the playground.
Rain drops fell intermittently. But Andrew loves trains and going to the park, so we ignored them and sipped our coffee.
I recall sitting there thinking how funny it was that all these little boys wanted to play on the red train. Like bees to honey.
But then, little boys and trains just seem to go together somehow.
When my daughter dropped me off at home, I went inside and turned on my TV to a news channel. And saw with horror what was happening in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Probably like most Americans, I watched in shock as men carrying torches and violence in their hearts attacked people they didn’t even know.
From what I understand, the Alt Right movement is primarily the quest of young white men who, for whatever reason, feel like they’ve gotten the short end of the stick. They weren’t born with hate in their hearts.
Once upon a time they also were little boys playing in the park. Before they grew up to believe that violence was somehow acceptable.
I googled “Alt right movement” and found this…
“Previously an obscure subculture, the alt-right burst onto the national political scene in 2015. Although initially small in number, the alt-right has a youthful energy and jarring, taboo-defying rhetoric that have boosted its membership and made it impossible to ignore.”
The source for that information was Breitbart News, a far-right opinion and commentary website founded in 2007 by conservative commentator Andrew Breitbart. It was one of the top sites that came up when I googled Alt Right.
Back to that wooden park bench where I sat drinking iced coffee and watched Andrew doing what little boys do.
He does not yet understand what hate is. And I hope he doesn’t find out any time soon.
I truly do hope that Saturday, August 12, 2017 is the beginning of something profound in America.
That we as citizens fight back hard in whatever way we can against agitators like those in Charlottesville. People that converged upon a lovely town with hate in their hearts. And left with blood on their hands.
It helps no one. But harms everyone.