ATLANTA - When the news broke in Charlottesville this weekend, hundreds of people took to the streets in Atlanta. They were marching to condemn what happened. Reaction to protests in Virginia continued Monday.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed Monday afternoon ordered flags to fly at half-staff at City Hall to honor the victims of the violence in Charlottesville. Meanwhile, members of the clergy in Georgia are weighing in on the subject.
“It needs attention. It needs not to be ignored,” said Monsignor Danie Stack, St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Alpharetta.
Monsignor Stack said some of his Catholic parishioners on Sunday did discuss what happened in Virginia and they did not dwell on it.
“The clock is turning backward rapidly,” said Rev. Gerald Durley, Providence Missionary Baptist Church.
The raw images of what happened in Virginia seem like an era long ago. Clergy members who have shepherded their congregations through decades of societal changes are attempting to put the past weekend’s events into perspective.
“I'm a statistics man,” said Monsignor Stack.
Monsignor Stack reminded his parishioners that the Virginia violence amounted to hundreds who took their political positions to the street, while, at the same time, America is a country of 325 million citizens.
“Most of the people I run into almost all the time are good, decent, caring people,” said Monsignor Stack.
“This is a moral crisis in this country. So now Muslims and Christians and Jews and Shiites and Buddhists must come together to talk about the moral nature of what is going on. That’s the role we got to play, to calm down the fear. Fear is based upon ignorance. So there's a lot of ignorance and ignorance fuels hate. So many times out of a negative situation positive results can be benefited to all the people,” said Rev. Durley.
Rev. Durley has been an activist preacher for decades. He is been taking his message from the pulpit out to the street, joining others fighting for equality.