We cannot be silent

Last weekend in Charlottesville, we saw a display of hatred and bigotry from a shameful group of small individuals that took aim at our neighbors, friends, families and our country itself. 

The United States of America is built upon the principle that every man and woman should have equal opportunity for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In Charlottesville, bigots took to the streets to violently proclaim that this sacred right belongs only to certain people. They are wrong. They are cowards, and those who maintain neutrality in the face of such clear evil are cowards, too. We all have a moral obligation to stand up to this hatred.

This has been a trying week for our nation. But it gives me great hope to see that countless Delawareans and Americans, from every walk of life and from every corner of our country have stood up, spoken out and condemned in unequivocal terms the violence and the hate that was spewed by radical bigots in the streets of Charlottesville. Their backward beliefs, and the monuments that stand as reminders of deep and lasting pain, should be resigned to our history books and museums, rather than stand to memorialize the bigotry of others. 

In difficult times, I often look to the guiding principles of my life. One of those is the Golden Rule that calls on us to treat others the way we want to be treated. Those words are particularly important now. In the First State, we must continue to live out those values and stand together as one community. As a country, we must speak out with one voice and make clear: hatred, bigotry and violence are not welcome here.

While our country isn’t perfect, we are resilient, and we never turn away from a challenge – no matter how great. I am confident that good people will keep standing up for what is right and doing right by their neighbors to continue making this country an ever more inclusive, more perfect union. Let us never give up in that pursuit.