As our nation grapples with the terrifying and tragic events in Charlottesville, VA, the members of the League of Women Voters of Arlington want to speak out to join in solidarity to support the values that our League and the Leagues of Massachusetts and the United States uphold. For almost 100 years, the League has been a nonpartisan defender of democracy. While we cherish the individual rights of free speech and assembly, we feel a special responsibility to make our voices heard when those rights are used to incite hate and violence, and when they serve as tools to divide our nation rather than unite us as a free people.

There is no place for hatred and violence in our democracy and all leaders must condemn these acts of domestic terrorism. While the freedom of speech and the freedom of assembly are some of our most cherished rights and must be protected, those rights do not extend to what we witnessed in Charlottesville, Virginia. The League of Women Voters stands in solidarity with the victims of violence in Charlottesville, and against white supremacism.

The League of Women Voters of Arlington, Massachusetts strongly and unequivocally condemns racism, bigotry and violence. With one voice, we reaffirm our commitment to these core, democratic values: promoting social and economic justice, securing equal rights for all, and
combating discrimination and poverty.

Carolyn Parsons and Angela Olszewski,
Co-Presidents, LWV of Arlington
August, 21, 2017

*As originally appeared as a Letter to the Editor in the Arlington Advocate