Heather Heyer: A Hero at a Time When Humanity Needs Heroes

August 14, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


“I want her death to be a rallying cry for justice.”
—Susan Bro (mother of Heather Heyer, who was murdered by a white supremacist in Charlottesville, August 12)

Heather Heyer was a 32-year-old paralegal in Charlottesville, Virginia. When armed, violent Nazis, KKKers, and other white supremacists mobilized in Charlottesville Saturday to protest the planned removal of a statue commemorating Robert E. Lee, she took to the streets with hundreds of other counter-protesters to confront and oppose them. A cowardly white supremacist drove his car into an intersection full of counter-protesters, killing Heather and injuring 19 people.

Heather’s mother, Susan Bro, told the Huffington Post there was no question that Heather would protest the neo-Nazis and others: “She always had a very strong sense of right and wrong, she always, even as a child, was very caught up in what she believed to be fair. Somehow I almost feel that this is what she was born to be, is a focal point for change. I’m proud that what she was doing was peaceful, she wasn’t there fighting with people.”

A neighbor in Charlottesville told HuffPost, “She lived her life like her path—and it was for justice.”

Heather Heyer’s last Facebook post before joining the counter-protests was, “If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.” The white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville declared, like the lynch mobs of not so long ago, that they were bringing weapons and they threatened to use them. Heather Heyer, and hundreds of others, defied the threats and dangers, and Heather heroically gave her life doing that.

Bob Avakian has written:

There is a place where epistemology and morality meet. There is a place where you have to stand and say: It is not acceptable to refuse to look at something—or to refuse to believe something—because it makes you uncomfortable. And: It is not acceptable to believe something just because it makes you feel comfortable. (BAsics 5:11)

That is a critical principle under any circumstances, but it takes on extreme urgency at this moment. Fascism has direction and momentum. The time to stop it is now. And that will take physical, and intellectual, courage.




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