Jess King responds to the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia

The white supremacy on display in Charlottesville, Virginia, is vile and dangerous. Now more than ever, we must stand together as brothers and sisters as we face this violence and racism. Since the founding of this nation, millions of Americans have struggled to make real the promise of freedom and equality for all. The wounds of slavery and racism have never fully healed, and so this struggle continues today.

Today I will reflect on the example of native Lancastrian and Congressman Thaddeus Stevens, who represented us here in the 16th district. At a time when slaveholders were expanding their reach and the Confederacy was just being born, Thaddeus Stevens defended runaway slaves and harbored people seeking freedom as part of the underground railroad. He brought the cause of abolition to the U.S Congress and steadfastly defended the inherent equality of all people.

Let us carry the example of Thaddeus Stevens with us today as we struggle to heal the wounds of white supremacy. Let us remain steadfast against the violence and racism we see today. Let us remember that no matter how many times they try to divide us, we are still brothers and sisters building an America for all of us.