Fort Worth Rep. Kay Granger on Wednesday lined up with President Donald Trump, condeming violence coming from “both sides” and raising concerns about a rush to remove Confederate monuments.
Speaking with North Texas conservative radio host Mark Davis on Wednesday morning, Granger was asked whether in the wake of clashes between white nationalists and counter-protesters last weekend in Charlottesville, violence perpetrated by left-of-center activists was being ignored.
“[W]e need to recognize it and talk about it because it’s on both sides,” said Granger, who said people on both the left and right are guilty of escalating their political activism to violence. She called the events in Charlottesville “a horrible, horrible tragedy to have happen.”
Granger’s comments echo the response Trump made this weekend and then reiterated on Tuesday about the deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville that left one person dead. The president condemned, by name, violent extremists, including the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis. He drew criticism from Democrats and Republican alike, however, for saying the people who showed up to protest white supremacy also shared in the blame.
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Granger appeared to agree with Trump’s position on removing Confederate monuments from public spaces as well, saying she was particularly disturbed by images of protesters destroying these memorials.
“The other one that came right after that was the destroying of statues that we see as history, others see as a bad history, and that will start happening,” said Granger. “When you watch that statue come down were the people are spitting and kicking… it’s a fury, not just hate.”
Davis, the host, said he feared that if protesters on the left came after statues of Lee, they would also try to take down statues of other historical figures, such as Sam Houston, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington. He noted that Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings had created a task force to determine whether statues should stay or go.
Granger, a former Fort Worth mayor, replied: “I completely agree, and so the cities should look at that ahead of time and say is this something we want to continue, or does this foment some this hatred, but that’s from city to city.”
Granger also said she had spoken with multiple religious and refugee organizations since the weekend’s violence about what leaders can do to combat hate and violence.
“It is really going to take all of us, but I think it’s going to take also from the pulpits recognizing that there is hate out there and that it’s become very violent,” said Granger.
“Unless we make some steps to say ‘now this is who we are as Americans, this how we address problems’ then we will have missed an opportunity to do the right thing and to call it what it is – and that is hate,’” she said.