Charlottesville, Virginia became the tragic new chapter under the presidency of Donald Trump as violence engulfed the city on Saturday. Hundreds of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan members gathered under the banner of 'Unite the right' and 'Take America back'. Clashes soon erupted with counter-protesters and police leaving three dead, including two police officers who died as a result of a helicopter crash while assisting police on the ground. James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of Ohio was charged with second-degree murder as the driver of the car which ran over people resulting in the death of one and causing injuries to more than 20.

Removal of Confederate statues

The extreme-right gathering has been a long time in the making ever since the government decided to remove the statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville, a decision which has been met by protests since May this year. These incidents were followed by a chain reaction of debates questioning the existence of more than 1000 Confederate monuments across 31 states of the United States. The violence in Charlottesville resulted in the announcement of an acceleration to the plans to remove Confederate statues by Jim Gray the Democrat mayor of Lexington, Kentucky, who communicated the message on twitter.

Response from politicians

Donald Trump came out and condemned the violence on Saturday, stating the need to be an American first, ahead of colour, creed, religion or political stance.

However, his failure to condemn white nationalists directly and rather choosing to attach the blame with "many sides" was met with nationwide dissent. Senator Bernie Sanders voiced his opinion against the President's subtle choice of words by posting; "No, Mr. President. This is a provocative effort by Neo-Nazis to foment racism and hatred and create violence.

Call it out for what it is." Republican Senator Ted Cruz came out and called the attack as an act of domestic terrorism.

The tragedy of Charlottesville followed a tumultuous week for the United States which saw tensions rise with North Korea. While the president and senators have been united in condemning the attack, what political reaction ensues will mark Donald Trump's standing with the extreme-right. The history of violence in American streets is tragic and the subtle political reactions are crying out to be dealt in 'right or wrong' instead of 'right or left'.