Charlottesville – Fake News

Two weeks ago, there were violent clashes between two groups of protesters in the American city of Charlottesville. The trouble started early on Saturday, 12 august, when hundreds of people supporting white supremacy rallied against the removal of a statue. (White supremacists believe that white people are better than other races)

The statue was of Robert E. Lee, a general who fought in the American Civil War over 150 years ago. The issue with the statue, is that General Lee fought for the side that supported slavery, and owned slaves himself. Therefore, the city council of Charlottesville realized that the statue of General Lee embodied ideals they could no longer stand for. So they decided to remove it

However, white supremacist and Nazi groups, who think that removing General Lee’s statue is an attack on the white race, began a protest against that decision. On the contrary, there was a lot of people who agreed with the city council, and started an anti-Nazi protest. This developed into violent clashes between the group. Sadly, a woman was killed and a lot of people got hurt from a car accident. Soon after the protest had ended it surfaced a video from the protest and the alleged car accident. It showed that a car drove over two land fields and straight into the crowd. It’s clear that this was no accident, but intentional.

The person who filmed this was a man called Brennan Gilmore. He received hundreds of death threats and people claimed he was a part of the CIA after he published the film. You can read more about his experiences in his article “How I became Fake News” linked bellow.

When I first read about this, I was shocked. At the same time, I was not that surprised that something like this happened in the USA. This is because of the huge resistance towards the movement Black Lives Matter and other battles for equal rights, like abortion. I felt shocked because being a Nazi literally mean that you support killing people based on the colour of their skin or their religion. How do people even dare to go out in the public and show that they are against human rights? Why do people still have to fight for basic human rights today? I mean this is something that everyone is born with, and no one has the right or power to take it away.

It’s clear that the situation must change for the better, and that soon. People are getting hurt, and the government are looking the other way, or showing their support by not addressing the real issue. I can understand why people are mad, I would have been outraged if this was going on in Norway. Because this is not about a statue or some car crash, it’s about basic human’s rights. Therefore, it really angers me when the President of the United States of America tweeted that both sides are to blame. Because that’s not the case, there is only one side to blame and that is the Nazis.

The scariest thing about what’s happening in America, is how so many are supporting the Nazis and white supremacies. This, in my opinion, is a result of people being under educated and misinformed. They are being way to critical towards some, and not critical enough towards others. For example, with Brennan Gilmore, people started to call his video fake news straight away and setting out rumours that he was a secret agent working for the government. Even if there are no facts supporting these rumours, citizens all over America are seeing them as the truth and what actually happened as a lie.

However, I have always believed that communications and peaceful solutions are the best way to solve any problem. Even though the other side is full of hatred and inhumane views. I believe with education and better information, more people will be more critical and understand the issue with Nazism and white supremacy.

In conclusion, I want to say that this is not only an issue in America. Even though its more visible there. It is extremely important that the other countries in the world stay aware of what’s going on and taking action if necessary. Everyone has a responsibility to share the truth, like Gilmore. Before we know it, America can become the new Nazi-Germany and that is something no one wants.

-Jenny

Sources:

http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/08/21/fake-news-charlottesville-215514

http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/40916141

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/12/us/charlottesville-protest-white-nationalist.html?mcubz=1

 

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