I know this is a local district and Charlottesville is many miles away.
But I have spent my adult life fighting for issues related to equality—and like so many of you, I'm horrified at what I'm seeing on TV and across social media.
When a city or a state decides that the time has passed to celebrate and glorify symbols associated with the darkest time in our country's history, I'm fine with that. Tear them down and sell them. Put them in a museum. But do not continue to glorify and venerate hate.
This is our home and times have changed. Symbols and leadership matters. Our words matter. There are many places in this country where racism and bigotry are still largely ignored. Don't let our home, our district, our state be one of them. In keeping these statues, we continue to legitimize words, deeds, and beliefs that are quite simply abhorrent to anyone that believes in true equality and community.
I have friends that voted for Trump. They are neither racists nor bigots. But as Trump's failures of leadership on issues of race and bigotry pile up, I greatly hope they realize how much damage he is doing by excusing, and not healing, our divisions.