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Tue Oct 9, 2018, 08:46 PM

Neville: Anti-Muslim Rallies Seek to Perpetuate "Whites-Only Club"

A couple weeks ago, I spoke up at a candidates forum about the rank hypocrisy of Republicans preaching “Be nice to everyone” yet rallying with racists to make non-white immigrants feel unwelcome:

Education professor Alan Neville follows up with this AAN column by pointing out the unwelcoming nature of the most recent anti-Muslim rally in Aberdeen and calling on his fellow local Christians to be truer to the inclusive principles of their faith:

The Christian faith takes the concept of welcoming even further, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (King James Bible, Mark, chapter 12:31).

Admittedly, we still have room for improvement. But it saddens me that some in our community want to send us backward by perpetuating the “whites-only club,” alienating and subjugating those who are different. The ironic thing about this misguided mentality is that, unless you are Native American, you and your ancestors were once those very same outsiders, those who came to America as immigrants in search of a better life.

Let’s put aside fear and intolerance, embrace the idea that all are welcome in our community, and treat people with love instead of hate [Alan Neville, “All Are Welcome (Almost),” Aberdeen American News, 2018.09.28].

My recognition and criticism of the overt racism of a small, angry handful of my Aberdeen neighbors is not a figment of my imagination or a mere rhetorical flourish. Other good Aberdonians like Neville see this harmful closed-mindedness in our community and are speaking up to counter it.

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