- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 17, 2017

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson revealed Wednesday that his Virginia home was recently vandalized with “hateful rhetoric” about President Trump.

Mr. Carson wrote a now-viral Facebook post in response to the deadly protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, recalling two personal stories that demonstrated the benefits of Americans listening to one another and taking the high road as opposed to wallowing in their own hate.

“Regarding all of the racial and political strife emanating from the events in Charlottesville last weekend, let me relate a story,” Mr. Carson began. “Several years ago we bought a farm in rural Maryland. One of the neighbors immediately put up a Confederate flag. A friend of ours who is an African-American three-star general was coming to visit and immediately turned around concluding that he was in the wrong place. Interestingly, all the other neighbors immediately put up American flags shaming the other neighbor who took down the Confederate flag.”

“More recently our home in Virginia along with that of a neighbor was vandalized by people who also wrote hateful rhetoric about President Trump,” he continued. “We were out of town, but other kind, embarrassed neighbors cleaned up most of the mess before we returned.”

Mr. Carson said both anecdotes should serve as a lesson that Americans who seek to combat hate should do it using the “right tools.”

“In both instances, less than kind behavior was met by people taking the high road,” he wrote.

“By the way, that neighbor who put up the Confederate flag subsequently became friendly. That is the likely outcome if we just learn to be neighborly and to get to know each other,” he concluded.

Mr. Carson’s comments came several days after a reported Nazi sympathizer rammed his car into a crowd of counter-protesters during clashes with white supremacists in Charlottesville, killing a woman and injuring more than a dozen others.

Mr. Trump has been widely criticized for blaming “both sides” for the violence.

Mr. Carson argued in a Facebook post Sunday that critics of Mr. Trump’s Charlottesville response are “falling into the trap of fighting ourselves when we have a much bigger enemy who is reveling in the state of confusion and discord that exist in our country.”

He also agreed with the president that hatred and bigotry is prevalent on “all sides.”

“There are radical terrorists in the world who want to destroy us and are coming dangerously close to acquiring the means to accomplish their goals,” he wrote Saturday. “We must present a strong and united front in the future. If America is going to survive, we must not yield to the forces of evil. Remember what our money says: ‘In God We Trust.’ Let’s act accordingly.”

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