By Leticia Treviño
Pulse Staff Reporter
Since the Civil Rights era, hate groups became less visible in the public’s eyes. The march in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 11, 2017, where Neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan joined forces to protest the removal of Robert E. Lee’s statue, was when they resurfaced.
After this event, where a counter-protestor lost her life, San Antonio removed a Confederate statue from Travis Park on August 30, 2017. The removal occurred around two in the morning. The cause of the removal was that San Antonio’s leaders thought the statue represented an era that should not be glorified, and it should instead be placed in a museum with context.
“I feel that now that Trump has been in the office, all these White people have felt that they have more power to come out and go against us, than they ever did…Trump is racist…” said Za’nika Greenwood, a freshman Psychology major.
Greenwood is not the only one who believes that ever since Trump has been in office, White Supremacists have come out of their confinement and now are more in the news than they ever have been.
“I’m Black. When I see these statues’ removal, [it is] not an issue with race. It’s an issue with Trump. When Obama was our president, you never saw as much hate… racial issues… as now,” said Samuel Norris, a History major.
Robert Hines, a History professor at Palo Alto College, said that even though the statue of Saddam Hussein was removed from Iraq, horrible things are still happening until this present day. The removal of statues is not helping the Iraqi people, nor will the removal of statues stop racial issues from occurring in America.
“George Washington owned hundreds of slaves. Hundreds! Should we tear down the Washington Monument?” asked Hines.
The not-for-profit Southern Poverty Law Center monitors domestic hate groups and other extremists. Its website contains hate group maps, advice on how to handle certain situations of racial issues and more. They give Ten Ways to Fight Hate: A Community Response Guide: 1) act, 2) join forces, 3) support the victims, 4) speak up, 5) educate yourself, 6) create an alternative, 7) pressure leaders, 8) stay engaged, 9) teach acceptance, and 10) dig deeper. There are 917 hate groups throughout the country and 55 in Texas.
“… The making of what we are today is due to the struggle my ancestors had to deal with. Now I get to be free and not see color but see what’s past race, beliefs and our past. It’s not just about race anymore. It’s if you’re a genuine person,” said Greenwood.