CHICAGO-Following is the statement of SEIU Healthcare Illinois Executive Vice President Greg Kelley condemning the threats against President Obama made by former Congressman Joe Walsh:
“While the rest of the nation mourns, former Illinois Republican Congressman Joe Walsh divides, threatening President Obama in hateful speech that must be condemned.
“Walsh has a history of outright racism and his abhorrent comments were made in this context. But with America grieving the loss of the heroic Dallas police officers, as well as grappling with the senseless deaths of black men in Minnesota and Louisiana, his intolerance serves to pull us further apart instead of bringing us closer together.
“This world needs more peace. And we know that justice is a condition of peace. The peaceful “Black Lives Matter” movement, also threatened and slurred by Walsh, has used the nonviolent tools of democracy to achieve this condition.
“Our hearts are heavy this week as more people fall victim to gun violence that is churned by racism and fear. Let’s hope our leaders listen less to racist demagogues like Joe Walsh and more to leaders like President Obama, who said, in extolling the nonviolence of Gandhi, that, “We do not have to live in an idealized world to still reach for those ideals that will make it a better place.””