The Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations has issued a statement re: the shootings in Dallas, Texas, Baton Rouge, La., and St. Anthony, Minn:
Once again we have witnessed the horrific use of violence at the hands of a gunman to kill and wound this time law enforcement officers in Dallas, Texas. We condemn in the strongest terms this heinous crime and extend our deepest sympathy to the families of the officers.
Our heartfelt sympathies also go out to the families and communities in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and St. Anthony, Minnesota during their time of grief.
Our thoughts and prayers are extended to all those who are in grief and we wish for healing in all three communities. We know first hand the pain a community experiences in such times as we faced the murder of Coeur d’Alene Police Sergeant Greg Moore.
The KCTFHR was born out of a reaction to such acts of hatred and violence in our region in 1981. We faced the threat of hate activities and crimes from the Aryan Nations who directed their hatred toward people of color, the Jewish community, the Catholic community, the LDS community, the LGBT community and others. The result of that hatred produced acts of murder, bank robberies, counterfeiting currency, threats toward individuals and groups and a series of hate crimes. But our communities rallied in the form of non-violence and unity to defeat those purveyors of hate.
It is our commitment to the use of non-violence and a hope for all America that we turn away from violence and promote a civil discourse that promotes respect and dignity for all people.
It is during these troubled times that we are reminded of the eloquent words and advice of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as he accepted the Noble Peace Prize at Stockholm, Sweden in 1964: “Non-violence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time: the need for man to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence.”
At our monthly KCTFHR Board meeting last night prior to our learning of the killings of the police officers in Dallas, we agreed to host an all day conference on October 13 in Coeur d’Alene titled “Returning Civility to America’s Democracy” with invitations to the faith community, business community, education community, civic groups and the general public.
Lets us all redoubled our efforts to create an environment where we find peaceful resolutions to our problems and issues.