On August 12, 2017 during a “Unite the Right” white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia a car was purposefully driven into a crowd of people peacefully protesting the rally, killing one and injuring over 30 other people.
The driver of the car, 20-year-old James Alex Fields Jr., was an avid supporter of neo-Nazi and white supremacist beliefs, and was reportedly a supporter of Donald Trump due to his racial views and his border wall proposal.
Shortly after the attack took place, many Americans expected President Trump to denounce the attack and condemn the white supremacists and neo-Nazis who started the “Unite the Right” rally. Instead, President Trump deflected the blame onto both the peaceful protestors and the white supremacists saying there was “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides”.
Days later at a press conference, when confronted by reporters saying that the white supremacists and neo-Nazis started everything that led to the attack, Trump doubled down on his previous comments stating “you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides”
In the nearly two years since the attack in Charlottesville, the U.S. has seen a wave of additional attacks by white supremacists and a rise in reported hate crimes. Whether it was the attacks on synagogues in Pittsburgh and Poway, or the recent mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, some say President Trump’s actions two years ago and his lack of action today have allowed white nationalism racism, extremism and hate to grow and become mainstream within the nation.
In his new book “Beyond Charlottesville: Taking a Stand Against White Nationalism” former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe examines the factors that led to such a tragedy and takes a behind the scenes look at the actions of everyone involved to see what could have been done to prevent this attack.
Today on AirTalk, guest host Libby Denkmann sits down with McAuliffe to discuss what has been done to prevent future attacks like Charlottesville as well as what still needs to be done.
Do you have any questions for the former governor? Give us a call at 866-893-5722.
With guest host Libby Denkmann
Terry McAuliffe, former Governor of Virginia (2014 - 2018), former Chair of the DNC (2001 - 2005); author of the new book, “Beyond Charlottesville: Taking a Stand Against White Nationalism” (Thomas Dunne Books, 2019)