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Disputing claims of ‘hate signs’ at Plaza rally

Posted on March 8, 2017 by Sonoma Valley Sun

Because he is one of the owners of several North Bay newspapers, it was shocking to read Darius Anderson’s article in the Feb. 28 issue of the SF Chronicle, where he claims that the Women’s March in Sonoma was filled with hate signs, many carried by children. We, the undersigned, were at that march, where nearly 3,000 people showed up in our small town. None of us saw one hate sign in the crowd and some of us spent time today going through the photos of that march to make sure we didn’t miss something. Darius Anderson owes an apology to the people of Sonoma and a retraction letter to the SF Chronicle.

Regarding the false equivalences Anderson cites, Obama’s White House did not foster hate speech, but Trump’s campaign certainly did. In the first days after the presidential election, the Southern Poverty Law Center administered an online survey to over 10,000 educators across the country. Their findings showed an alarming upswing in verbal harassment, slurs, derogatory language, and disturbing incidents among students since Trump’s campaign, many using Trump’s words. No, there is not equal hate speech on both sides. That assertion is Fake News. One only has to look through news stories during the past year to see from where the hate speech emanates.

Georgia Kelly

Sarah Ford

Fred Allebach

Lisa Summers

Bob Edwards

Mara Lee Ebert

Will Shonbrun

Gigi Pfleger

Dave Ransom

Kimberly Blattner


3 thoughts on “Disputing claims of ‘hate signs’ at Plaza rally

  1. Thank you very much for this letter, and for stating the truth of the day. I was among the 3,000 at the Women’s March and there was not one sign of hate. Signs and images of love, caring, hope, and, yes, concern, abounded. Perhaps Mr. Anderson didn’t relish some of the signs that expressed dismay about the new administration.

  2. I was hoping that the San Francisco Chronicle would publish Georgia Kelly’s letter. I read the Chronicle every day. Finally, I sent the following letter, but it was perhaps way to long after Mr. Anderson’s Op Ed piece appeared, so it was not published. I also gave a shout out at the Women’s Day gathering for people to look up and read the piece and please contact the Chronicle if they were at the march. I felt in that forum I could not mention his name, I just referred to a piece from a Sonoma mover and shaker published on 2-28.

    My attempt to the Chronicle:
    You published an opinion piece by Darius Anderson on 2-28. In it were references to signs using hate speech at the Women’s March in Sonoma.

    One should not confuse satire with hate speech. There were satirical signs regarding Trump’s misogynistic comments. This is not hate speech; this is the opposite of hate speech. I did not attend the Sonoma march, but many, many of my friends did and they assure me there were no hate speech signs. I went with my husband and daughter to march in Sacramento instead. I want to teach children to respect others and that is what the women’s marches were about.

    I am wondering if Mr. Anderson is feeling a little fear about losing his dream of building a mega development in Cuba, now that Trump is in and the democrats are out. I am also wondering if he sees his little fiefdom of Sonoma turning on him. He expresses concern about money in politics, but spent his own money to successfully quash a grass roots effort of the little people to manage growth in the town of Sonoma. As a result, his 60 room hotel will be built on our little plaza. He sees 3,000 people marching and wonders if maybe the next time around he won’t be so successful. There has also been a mass outpouring of support for our Latino community in Sonoma. By writing his piece, maybe, just maybe he wants to get a little Trump magic and power on his side.

  3. Darius Anderson’s ideas behind what he said in article was in essence correct. The dem’s and republicans’ are both to blame for the current mess. He seems off kilter with his line that Hate messages filled signs but hate is in the eyes of the beholder. Perhaps what he saw was hate. There seems to be much of that going around lately….. Mr Anderson is relatively new to town of Sonoma and has brought what many of us feel is a mixed bag of investments to this town. He is a paradox living and breathing. Who knows what he saw on the plaza that day ? He very well may have seen ” hate ” in the words he read on the signs. Trump and his people should be hated in my opinion. They are going full pedal to the metal for destroying the air, the water, the education system and more… Look at his apppointments. If mR Darius Anderson was a smart man he would side with these feelings of anger towards Trump and friends. But most likely he will play middle of the road so he can prevent himself from losing money… By the way… Mr Anderson, like Trump, is ALL about money…

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