Intolerance is anti-American. For far too long fear has been used to spread hate, discriminate and divide our communities. We know that speaking out early and often is the only way to stop the spread of intolerance, fascist rhetoric and divisiveness.
When the President equated anti-racism protesters to neo-Nazis, he gave credence to those driven by beliefs rooted in hatred, Nazism and fear. Fear isn’t a flaw. It’s OK to fear change. The world is changing; so is our economy, our culture and our way of life.
But as Americans, as citizens of the world, we cannot let fear turn to hatred. We need to embrace change and embrace our culture of resiliency. As a country, we have faced far greater threats than a cowardice fueled bigotry and anti-Semitism. I faced anti-Semitism growing up and I know first-hand the visceral gut-punch of being denied a job, slurred by a car racing by and I believe deeply that all of our children deserve better—and so we say, never again.
Hatred, bigotry, sexism, racism and anti-Semitism have no place in America and no place in our society. It’s antithetical to who we are. We deserve leaders who will look this intolerance in the eye and push back harder than ever.
In these difficult days, I am more grateful than ever for the opportunity to stand up for who we are as a strong, united community. Together, we must have the courage to call out hatred for what it is and stand up for what we know to be right—our kids and our future are counting on us.
Together we stand to say never again.
Long Beach City Manager
Democratic Candidate for Nassau County Comptroller