On June 1, a group of about 100 people in Fontana took the immortal words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to heart: “We adopt the means of nonviolence because our end is a community at peace with itself."

A peaceful protest, which included people of many ethnic groups, was held on the corner of Lytle Creek Road and Summit Avenue in response to the tragic death of Minnesota resident George Floyd, an unarmed African-American man who was killed when a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes on May 25.

The horrible incident demonstrated that the evil of racism remains a stain on the United States and must be eradicated. Fighting this awful plague will require a major effort by Americans, but we need to do all we can to achieve a victory over hatred and intolerance. As King so eloquently said: "With patient and firm determination we will press on until every valley of despair is exalted to new peaks of hope, until every mountain of pride and irrationality is made low by the leveling process of humility and compassion; until the rough places of injustice are transformed into a smooth plane of equality of opportunity; and until the crooked places of prejudice are transformed by the straightening process of bright-eyed wisdom.”

Sadly, there will still be setbacks, as when another peaceful demonstration in Fontana on May 28 was later hijacked by people who threw rocks at cars, businesses, and police. King warned against this when he said: “We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence.”

We must redouble our efforts to bring about positive change in our homes, our communities, our nation, and our world. One great way to do this is to be involved in volunteer work for good causes, which many people in Fontana are doing right now in order to help those affected by the coronavirus crisis. Another important way is to fulfill our civic duty and keep our democracy healthy by casting our votes in the upcoming November election. Let’s pursue King’s dream and strive to make this planet a wonderful place for everyone.

(1) comment

iliveinfontana

Racism starts when people choose to allow it to take hold within themselves. As a long standing fontana resident I have dealt with racism my whole life.

As a child I was beaten by groups of african americans and hispanic americans. On more than one occasion, with no provocation. When something like this happens it's easy to let anger and fear take hold. To direct it at a race, and not see it for what it is, is an easy way out. We must all take the time and see that we are all one race, one people. I did not allow the hate to consume me or taint my way of seeing my fellow man. We need to be strong, don't allow fear and hate to breed racism.

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