UPDATE: I’m a hack and a fraud. I didn’t check if the CVille Police had bowed to public pressure or not… I never thought that they would. But it seems that they will take the car out of the fleet next year.
From The Daily Progress on 12/12/2019: “We felt it was appropriate to review the matter after questions were raised on social media and by our community,” Richardson said in the release. “This is clearly a reminder for many of the Summer of Hate and the attack, and we believe removing it from our fleet is in the best interests of the community.”
I apologize for this. – Zach D Roberts
The Charlottesville Police department was absent the weekend of the Unite the Right Rally when Heather Heyer was murdered and dozens of lives were destroyed in 24 hours of chaos and violence.
I’ve written a bit about this.
So when my friend and incredible activist/writer Molly Conger posted a photo of one of the CVille Police Department vehicles, I was, to say the least… a bit surprised.
There’s a lot to unpack in these images.
First, let’s talk about the car itself. It’s a Dodge Challenger, which is a car that is used by many police forces across the country. In Upstate NY where I live it wouldn’t something that stands out that much – the town where I live many of the officers drive it…. but in Charlottesville this exact make and model of car means something. The car that was driven through a crowd of activists on August 12th, 2017 but a white supremacist, murdering Heather Heyer and injuring dozens more, was a Dodge Challenger.
But like I said, the make of the car is a standard one used by police agencies, so I’ll let that go to an extent. Still, if I was the CVille police dept, I might avoid acquiring that particular model.
The car alone is questionable but when they decided to add the ‘Blue Lives Matter flag – something that was started in response to Black Lives Matter protests they start to get into “what the fuck” territory. At this point the ‘Blue Lives Matter’ bullshit is essentially white nationalist propaganda. The racists at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville flew the flag, alongside the Confederate and National Socialist Movement flags.
But wait, there’s more!
As if everything else on this cop car wasn’t signaling to white nationalists, but they decided to add this torch run sticker. As someone who was there to witness the tiki torch rally in Charlottesville, this would make me shake my head on a police car – but a police car in CVille with all this shit on it? You’re making a statement.
Then there’s the almost certainly accidental/terrible design of the hood which makes it look like there is a HH on the hood thanks to the vents crossing the blue stripes.
The police’s response to public outcry has been unsurprising but still terrible. “If the community feels threatened by the presence of this car, and request it be removed from our fleet, we would work toward an amicable solution,” Brackney said. That was in response to a CVille Weekly inquiry back in August. Molly took the photos used in this piece on December 5th when the car was parked across the street from the police parking garage where DeAndre Harris was nearly beaten to death.
It looks like not much has changed in the police department that did nothing as nazis, Proud Boys and Klan members marched through the streets attacking the people of the town that they were sworn to protect.
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