SPRINGFIELD, NJ - Springfield's "Stand with Charlottesville" vigil was held on the lawn of Temple Sha’arey Shalom Thursday night. An estimated crowd of over 70 adults and children began the evening by singing "America the Beautiful". The purpose of the vigil according to the press release was to “Stand up for the rights nof Americans who believe that race, color, and religious background should be celebrated and to stand together against hate and bigotry of any kind”.
A Holy Cross Lutheran Church minister surveyed the crowd and asked “what kind of world do we want for our children?”
“Do we want to live in a world of love or a world of hate?” he said. “This is our community here in Springfield. Do we even follow the teachings anymore? We have almost become an apathetic society. This isn’t a left versus right thing this is a right versus wrong thing. What are you going to do about it? We march almost every other day, but I am getting tired. We can’t do this alone. We need help.”
Wendy Jones noted that even in the past, people of different races worked together.
“We are one,” Jones said. “What can we do? What I want to recommend take an issue, make it something local that you can do here and now. Then work with five people; work with 50 people, but work together.”
Elissa Zylberslag said she fights hate for a living. She went on to say, "Charlottesville has been different for me. The significance of the violence of her death strikes a cord. Do we respond with peaceful resistance of Martin Luther King or become more violent like Malcom X. I chose to rise up and be on the side of Martin Luther King."
The vigil ended with a group hug and the singing of “We Shall Overcome" and "Give Peace a Chance".