George HW, George W. Respond to Charlottesville

'America must always reject racial bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred in all forms'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2017 12:45 PM CDT
George HW, George W. Respond to Charlottesville
Former Presidents George Bush, right, and his son George W. Bush arrive to throw the ceremonial first pitch for Game 4 of baseball's World Series between the San Francisco Giants and the Texas Rangers on Oct. 31, 2010, in Arlington, Texas.   (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Two former Republican presidents are coming out strong against racism following the Charlottesville violence. "America must always reject racial bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred in all forms," say George HW Bush and George W. Bush in a statement released Wednesday. "As we pray for Charlottesville, we are reminded of the fundamental truths recorded by that city's most prominent citizen in the Declaration of Independence: We are all created equal and endowed by our Creator with unalienable rights. We know these truths to be everlasting because we have seen the decency and greatness of our country."

As the Houston Chronicle notes, it's somewhat rare for former presidents to speak out on issues after their terms end; they typically prefer not to give any hint of attempting to undermine their successors. But in addition to the Bushes, the two most recent Democratic presidents have also spoken out on Charlottesville. "Even as we protect free speech and assembly, we must condemn hatred, violence and white supremacy," Bill Clinton tweeted, per the Atlantic. And Barack Obama responded with a series of tweets quoting Nelson Mandela, one of which is now the most popular tweet ever. (More Charlottesville, Va. stories.)

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