Letter: Stand against those who take law into own hands

Graphic by Lori Deaton

Recent incidents have alarmed people of conscience in Western North Carolina and across the country. On Feb. 23, Ahmaud Arbery, a black man who was jogging in a residential Brunswick, Ga., neighborhood, was murdered by a group of white men who said they thought he was suspicious looking. The local police took no action for 70 days, until the press got involved, leaving them no choice but to arrest those responsible.

On May 3, in Pender County, N.C., an armed mob, including an off-duty deputy sheriff, knocked on the door and threatened to forcefully enter the home of a black family, claiming to be looking for a missing girl in the neighborhood. No girl was there, and it was the wrong home, but the family was terrified as their lives were threatened by this vigilante gang of thugs.

Incidents like these are too common, sometimes with the silence or encouragement of the highest elected officials.

Whether you are the editor of a newspaper, an elected official or just a person who believes in basic justice, the rule of law and the sanctity of human rights in our nation, it’s time to stand against those who take the law into their own hands through acts of racial hatred, intimidation and domestic terrorism.

— Avram Friedman

Editor’s note: This letter was submitted the day before George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Letters
We want to hear from you! Send your letters and commentary to letters@mountainx.com

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.