Fil-Am college students on Charlottesville uproar: “no place for hate”
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA — Just a day after his belated condemnation of the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis, President Trump backtracked to his initial statements on the violence in Charlottesville.
“Excuse me, I’ve condemned neo-Nazis. I’ve condemned many different groups. But not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me. Not all of those people were white supremacists by any stretch,” he said. “Those people were also there because they want to protest the taking down of a statue, Robert E. Lee.”
He pins responsibility on Saturday’s violence on both the swastika-bearing alt-right protesters and what he calls the alt-left.
“I think there’s blame on both sides. You look at both sides. I think there’s blame on both sides. And I have no doubt about it.”
But for Charlottesville residents, it is clear that theirs is the side defending this peaceful college town from the side of hate led by alt-right white supremacist David Duke.
Filipino-Americans are among the University of Virginia students who stood up against the white supremacists and neo-Nazis on their very own campus.
“Knowing that there are people spreading this hate on the lawn, that I walk to like walk on everyday to go to class, it’s just disheartening,” says Danielle Dacanay, from the Organization of Young Filipino Americans. “I feel like they were not only spreading the hate, they were also ripping students of their safety.”
Despite all the hate that Charlottesville experienced the past few days, Filipino-Americans remain optimistic about their future in Trump’s alternate America.
“I really think about, do I want there to be a world that my kids can still learn Tagalog, or that they could still eat the food that I eat and not be seen as different, and not be seen as not part of this country,” said Joe Malasa.
The writing on the walls and on the streets of Charlottesville says it all — this peace-loving college town has no place for hate.