Anti-racist activists will rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Saturday, a year after the white nationalist "Unite the Right" demonstration plunged the city into turmoil.
In August 2017, white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus chanting Nazi slogans. The next morning, their clashes with counter-protesters turned violent, culminating in the death of Heather Heyer, 32, who was killed when she was hit by a car driven by a white supremacist who plowed into a crowd.
Following her daughter's death, Heyer's mother, Susan Bro, has become an anti-racist activist in her stead. "I turned my attention to carrying forth her message," Bro said. "You don’t get to silence my kid and get away with it. I'm going to speak even louder."
In a CNN interview Friday evening, Bro sought to direct attention to Heyer's passion for equality rather than her death. It's time to "take the focus off Heather, as Heather would want us to do," she explained. "It's been a year now, and let's focus on why she was there. Let's focus on what she died for."
Charlottesville will be subject to a heavy police presence this weekend, and the primary organizer of last year's white nationalist event, Jason Kessler, was denied a permit for a concurrent demonstration this year. Instead, he is planning a "white civil rights" event in Washington, D.C., on Sunday. Bonnie Kristian