Manzanar Committee Statement on Racism, Xenophobia, and Terrorism In Charlottesville, Virginia

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LOS ANGELES — On August 12, the Manzanar Committee, sponsors of the annual Manzanar Pilgrimage and Manzanar At Dusk programs, repudiated the violence, fueled by racism and xenophobia, that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia earlier today, not to mention President Donald Trump’s failure to condemn those who were ultimately responsible for the violence and terrorism that occurred.

“The Manzanar Committee is outraged by the vicious, premeditated attack on peaceful demonstrations this afternoon in Charlottesville,” said Manzanar Committee Co-Chair Bruce Embrey. “Today’s events can only be described as terrorism.”

“These acts must be condemned by all people,” added Embrey. “The Nazis, Ku Klux Klan, and other fascist groups, are, and have always been, terrorist organizations with no other purpose than to intimidate, terrorize and murder people of color. Domestic terrorism and racist violence have no other goals than to stop the expansion of democracy to those historically denied the full promise of the Constitution of the United States of America.”

Embrey pointed out that what happened in Charlottesville must not be viewed in a vacuum. Rather, it is part of an alarming, growing trend, fueled by racism and xenophobia, and supported by the Trump Administration.

“The violent attacks on the Muslim, Sikh, Jewish communities, and on communities of color, are not a recent development by any means,” Embrey stressed. “But the increasingly brazen calls for violence against political opponents of these racist groups is deeply disturbing, to say the very least. We cannot separate any of this from the thoroughly reactionary policies being pushed through all branches of the Federal government, and in the Justice Department, in particular.”

“The politics and statements by so many elected officials, and members of the Trump Administration, are not mere ‘dog whistles,’” Embrey added. “The statements and policies of the Trump campaign, and of the Trump Administration, are calls to action, serving to embolden the most extreme right wing elements.”

“On behalf of the Manzanar Committee, we urge everyone to join with us in condemning these violent acts, the racism and xenophobia that fueled them, and the Trump Administration that, tacitly or not, supports them. We also extend our best wishes to the victims of today’s violence and their families.”

The Manzanar Committee is dedicated to educating and raising public awareness about the incarceration and violation of civil rights of persons of Japanese ancestry during World War II and to the continuing struggle of all peoples when Constitutional rights are in danger. A non-profit organization that has sponsored the annual Manzanar Pilgrimage since 1969, along with other educational programs, the Manzanar Committee has also played a key role in the establishment and continued development of the Manzanar National Historic Site. For more information, check out our blog at https://blog.manzanarcommittee.org, call us at (323) 662-5102, and e-mail us at info@manzanarcommittee.org. You can also follow the Manzanar Commitee on Facebook, on Twitter at @manzanarcomm, on Instagram at @manzanarcommittee, on Pinterest and on YouTube.

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