I don’t often speak about this with my own words. I’m usually more comfortable sharing other people’s words on racial issues, maybe because I’m afraid I’ll say something wrong or that makes me sound ignorant. But I can’t let fear silence me, because there are so many people who need to hear my voice and my heart. To know they are seen, loved, valued, championed, and made in God’s image. They need to know that I see them and the challenges they face just by being born a different skin color-even though I will never truly understand the pain and challenges and fears because I will never live them.

What happened in Charlottesville this weekend was not okay. It was not the exercise of free speech, because it was violent and hateful at its core-which is why the Government shut the event

down before it “officially” began. It was stomach turning at its core. The excuse of protesting a statue removal was just that, and the true colors were illuminated with hateful words and citronella torches on Friday night.

“White nationalism” is not different from White Supremacy. It is a whitewash to say otherwise. It is a disrespectful dismissal of hatred.

These people are not the voice of Christ followers. They may steal our name but they do not represent us.

Saying All Lives Matter is ignorant.

To all of you, I need to make it clear that I do NOT excuse, minimize, or gloss over what happened in a city very close to me. It is not ok, it is not acceptable, and it doesn’t matter if it was one person spewing hate or a thousand. We are called to love, to speak love, and to denounce what is evil.

To Christians who are silent because “It’s better not to give these people attention”: is that how you think Jesus would have responded to this? I don’t think so. I think He woulda been all up in it countering lies and hate with truth.

To PoC reading this: I love you, I celebrate the beauty of who God made you, and the gift and blessing of diversity. I pray for protection and safety over you now, and that hearts will change and the reasons for fear and heartache will be removed.

Until then, I will not be silent. I will not let hate drown out love.

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