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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Setti Warren's statement on Charlottesville

Dear Friend,
 
​Yesterday, Tassy and I sat our two kids down to talk about Charlottesville. We spent the weekend darting around the house turning off TVs when the terrible images of the racist terrorist attack popped on their screens, but if you're a parent, you know you can only protect your kids from the truth for so long. Before they left the house for camp on Monday, we decided we had to tell them what happened.
 
Abigail took a few minutes to process what I was telling her. The idea that a group of people who have never met her in a place she's never been to could hate her just because she's my child is a hard concept to grasp for a 10 year old. Our 6 year old John asked if the man who drove a car into a crowd of people did it on purpose. 
 
I told them about the time, during Boston's bussing backlash, when my parents kept me home from a field trip to Bunker Hill because they could't be sure that I would be safe. Tassy reminded them that we recently visited Bunker Hill as a family and no one bothered us. Things get better, we told them.
 
I talked more about the conversation Tassy and I had with Abigail and John in a radio interview yesterday. If you have a moment, please listen in.
 
In the long term, I have faith that things will get better. Right now, we need to be honest about the fact that we are witnessing a resurgence of hate groups who aim to foment violence and intimidation by hijacking our political discourse. They know they can only win if they turn neighbors into enemies and cause one outrage after another. 
 
We can't let them. 
 
My grandfather fought the Nazis in the Battle of the Bulge. I will do whatever I can to stop the spread of their evil ideology today, but I will not allow the anger I feel about the evil actions of a despicable few to drive me to hate my fellow Americans with whom I have political disagreements. This is a serious challenge for our nation, but it is not about Democrats versus Republicans. It is about good versus evil, love versus hate, the best of America versus Nazis.
 
Tassy​, Abigail, John ​and I will keep the families of Heather Heyer, H. Jay Cullen and Berke M.M. Bates in our thoughts and prayers.
 
All the best,
Setti

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