Washington D.C.’s metro rail system is considering providing separate trains for white nationalists attending the so-called “Unite the Right” rally next weekend, according to the Washington Post. The rally, taking place at the National Mall, will be held on the anniversary of last year’s deadly events in Charlottesville, Va.
The proposal would involve providing special trains to white nationalists on August 11 and 12 that pick up at the East Falls Church Metro in Virginia and go to the Foggy Bottom station. Once there, police will escort them to the rally.
Members of the Amalgamated Transit Union, Metro’s largest union, leaked the plans and stated that it refuses to accommodate the hate groups, ThinkProgress reported.
“Sources have shared with ATU Local 689 that a hate group with Ku Klux Klan affiliation will be provided three private Metro rail cars and police escort to Foggy Bottom Metro Station for the ‘Unite the Right’ 2018 rally,” the union said. “More than 80% of Local 689’s membership is people of color, the very people that the Ku Klux Klan and other white nationalist groups have killed, harassed and violated. The union has declared that it will not play a role in their special accommodation.”
ATU Local 689 President Jackie Jeter said in a statement, reported by ABC WJLA, that while the union is proud to provide transit for causes such as the Women’s March and Black Lives Matter, among others, the union draws the line at “hate groups and hate speech.”
Jeter added that the plans to accommodate white nationalists are “hypocritical” after a recent legal case ruled in favor of Metro’s decision to ban “issue-oriented” advertising.
“Considering that the courts granted Metro the ability to deny ads on buses and trains that are ‘issue-oriented,’ we find it hypocritical for [Wiedefeld] to make these unprecedented special accommodations for a hate group,” Jeter said.