Students in graduation
Fr. Edwin: The past is not past, as seen in Virginia

Who among us would have thought that we would need to explain to our young students of color that the racist hate and violent demonstrations they see and hear on the news are real threats today, as they were for their grandparents and great-grandparents? We teach them that their voices matter, that they are loved as God's children.

We adults must model for them and speak for them now: to say that the hateful racist symbols and ugly epithets so disturbingly displayed at Charlottesville this weekend must be condemned for the evil that they are and the oppression they portend. That the failure of moral leadership from the elected heads of our country demands that all people of integrity, especially those inspired by faith, speak out for the human and religious values we claim to believe in and practice.

Our young people of many hues and many faiths demand that we add our voices to those condemning this display and stand with those who know the cause of racial justice and the dignity of all people demands our full-hearted and constant support.

--Rev. Edwin D. Leahy, O.S.B. '63