Congressman Raul Ruiz Holds Charlottesville Discussion

Congressman Raul Ruiz Holds Charlottesville Discussion


Palm Desert, CA

Congressman Raul Ruiz invited community members and leaders to discuss the violence that broke out after the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, VA. 

"We had multiple faith based leaders. We had Muslims, we had Christians, we had the Jewish community, we had LGBT members, Latinos and immigrants," Ruiz said, listing off the variety of community members who attended. 

Related: Auschwitz Survivor Reacts to Charlottesville Hate and Murder of Heather Heyer

The congressman said it was important for community members to address the violence in Charlottesville.

"We’ve been hearing from community members who are experiencing a strong sense of isolation, anxiety and fear because of what happened in Charlottesville," Ruiz said. 

Fr. Howard Lincoln with Sacred Heart Church said he’s still in shock from what happened.

"It’s hard to believe that there’s people like that in our country, and we fought a second world war to defeat Nazism," Lincoln said.

Religious leaders shared their opinions on how to prevent what happened in Charlottesville from happening in the Coachella Valley

"This is about the phenomenon of hatred in American society, and what do we do here in the Coachella Valley to keep things safe," said Rabbi David Lazar with Temple Isaiah in Palm Springs.

Lincoln said everyone agreed they need to be role models and be vocal. 

"We have a moral responsibility to speak out against all hatred and to denounce it," he said.

Ruiz said he and other leaders will stand behind anyone who experiences any type of hatred.

"We are going to stand to protect you. It doesn’t matter if you are republican, democrat, if you are an elderly person or a young person, if you’re gay or straight or affluent or indigent," Ruiz said.