Can Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton voters from the Charlotte area come together to resist bullying and hate?
Charlotte members of Pantsuit Nation, a “secret” Facebook group that emerged shortly before the Nov. 8 election to support Clinton, say a Sunday “LoveWinsCLT” rally will be a nonpartisan event in favor of diversity and inclusion, organized by a group of concerned women.
Spokeswoman Jessy Milicevic said speakers have been asked not to talk about the candidates but about how to support people who feel targeted. It will be from 2:30 to 6 p.m. Sunday at ourBridge for Kids, 1350 Central Ave., a nonprofit, nonpartisan group that supports immigrant children.
Groups serving vulnerable populations will have information on hand for people who want to take action. Activities for children, such as bounce houses and face paint, will be available.
“We can all agree that post-election discrimination and hate crimes are not OK,” said Milicevic. “This is not a protest rally. We’re not going to be chanting and holding signs.”
Across the country, there have been reports of bigotry, bullying and hate crimes since Tuesday’s presidential election. In a Sunday “60 Minutes” interview, Trump called such reports “terrible” and urged people to “stop it.” However, Trump’s appointment of Breitbart News executive Steve Bannon as chief strategist and senior counselor has revived fear that his administration will encourage the kind of views the Breitbart site is known for, including white nationalism, anti-Semitism and sexism.
Erika Lopez of Charlotte’s Pantsuit Nation chapter and Sil Ganzó of ourBridge are organizing Sunday’s rally. The Facebook page for the event says it came together “to give voice to those that believe that hate is not an American value. The #LoveWinsCLT rally will give Charlotte residents that share this belief a place to meet each other, hear from community leaders, and most importantly, find their own voice through civic engagement and service.”