BEAUFORT, Sc. (WSAV) – Beaufort residents gathered together Monday night for a candlelight vigil in the wake of the violent weekend in Charlottesville to show that Beaufort stands against hate in America.
“We have suffered and been silent for a long, long time when it came to acts of violence towards our minority members,” said Alison Davidow with Indivisible Beaufort, who organized the vigil.
After a weekend of violence rooted from hate, Beaufort came together to light a candle for peace, a candle for love, a candle for unity, all in a vigil for a nation free from that hate.
“When we saw the events in Charlottesville we realized that it was time to speak up,” said Davidow, “And participate with Beaufort to show the rest of South Carolina and the world that we cared deeply about American values.”
The violence in Charlottesville, Va. stemmed from a “Unite The Right” protest – protesting the removal of a Civil War statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
“Historically, here in South Carolina, Georgia, the South…. we still bear the marks of slavery, Confederacy,” said Charlie Tyler with Indivisible Beaufort, “Even though it’s been 150 years since the Confederacy lost that war, we still feel the impact of it… the struggle.”
Tyler says Beaufort is an area that has always set an example.
“This area of the Port Royal, area of Beaufort was really once the lead for blacks to begin to move into political perspective. Robert Smalls, of course, is one of the great sons of this area who had a political role,” Tyler said.
South Carolina Representative Michael Rivers spoke at the vigil. He told New Three, “We are the United States, supposedly, and it’s not optional for us not to come together.”
“My daughter… I home-school her, and this was a real life experience lesson for her to know what is shown on TV, not everyone is like that… hate is not right,” said Beaufort resident Honika Plowdeniz.
“We cannot be complacent we can’t just be silent and hope it won’t happen here,” said Davidow, “We’re going to make sure that everybody knows that it won’t happen here. It will not be tolerated. We will overcome hate with love.”
Tyler adds that the words of the Declaration of Independence and the United State Constitution set a precedent for the nation we should be.
“For me, what’s also very important are the words that are on the base of the Statue of Liberty: ‘Send me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free. Send these the homeless, the tempest, tossed to me, I lift my lamp aside the golden shore’.”