What started as a debate over the removal of a statue depicting Confederate Army general Robert E. Lee has now spanned into a nationwide conversation about racial equality, white supremacy, freedom of speech and, of course, the jarring inadequacy of somehow-still-president, Donald Trump.
Ever since Saturday, news about the events that transpired in Charlottesville, Virginia, have been dominating both local and international media. The world has its eyes on America due to one of the biggest white nationalist protests in the last few decades that has turned violent and took a life of a young woman named Heather Heyer.
With many reports coming from all over the place – some giving hope, like the fact that even Robert E. Lee's descendant agrees the statue should be removed, some scaring the shit out of everyone, like VICE News' exclusive interview with some of the neo-Nazis and KKK members in attendance of the protest – one piece of news that really left everyone gasping was President Trump's official response to Charlottesville.
Speaking from his golf club in New Jersey, Trump declared he's condemning the "egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides." He also took to Twitter to post some vague, supposedly inspiring messages of hope.
All of which was met with incredible backlash from the public pointing out that not only the President failed to single out white nationalists and neo-Nazis for causing the violent outbreak which ended up in lots of injuries and Heyer's death, but he didn't even acknowledge the victim's name.
Shocked and outraged, many took to social media, as well as the streets to protest Trump's petty response and overall attitude about the riots in Virginia.
We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2017
Condolences to the family of the young woman killed today, and best regards to all of those injured, in Charlottesville, Virginia. So sad!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2017
In New York, crowds gathered around Trump Tower to express their disappointment with the current government and to call for the President's resignation. Many attendees supported the claim that events in Charlottesville were directly influenced by Trump getting elected and Republicans taking over the office.
One of the protesters who spoke to NBC News said she believes Trump "emboldened the so-called alt-right" and gave them a platform: "He knows this is his base. He knows they’re acting in his name," she told the news outlet.
Take a look at some powerful shots from the protest below and make sure to take a stand with those who are actually fighting against racism and bigotry. You can do so by supporting movements such as Black Lives Matter, ACLU, NAAPC, donating to help the victims, reaching out to your members of Congress and many other positive ways.