The Meaning Of Charlottesville


The violence may be hundreds of miles away, but social media brings it right into our living rooms.  And with emotions running high, you never know when or where it will happen next. Lisa Hager teaches political science at SDSU. We asked her about the events in Charlottesville, and their significance for both the country and KELOLAND.

“There’s these viewpoints, these white supremacist viewpoints being expressed, that I think for a lot of Americans, they thought those were pretty much dead,” Hager said.

Yet as we all saw too vividly this weekend, they obviously are not.

“There’s actually these types of viewpoints alive and well in the United States, and that now these individuals are not shy about actually having people see that they have those feelings,” Hager said.

Hager believes the events in Charlottesville could be polarizing for both sides.

“I think it could serve as a unification type of point,” Hager said. “So, you would have people who potentially support those white supremacists, then trying to have rallies across the country. But then you also have people who disagree with that type of viewpoint, and are then coming together.” 

That’s already evident in the demonstration this weekend representing both sides of the political spectrum.

“So in Charlottesville, we did see the counter-protest,” Hager said. “So I think we’ll also see a lot of people banning together and realizing that this is something that they disagree with, and they need to have their voices be heard as well.” 

The relevance of what happened in Charlottesville goes well beyond Virginia, she says.

“What’s to say that that doesn’t pop up somewhere in South Dakota? Why Charlottesville? It just happened to be there, but it could easily have occurred in Minnesota, South Dakota, name any place near you,” Hager said.

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