Even since a white nationalist rally turned violent in Charlottesville earlier this month, people have been coming forward to use their voices to fight for justice. And on Tuesday, a celeb couple used their voices, as well as their wallets, to make a change. George and Amal Clooney announced they're donating $1 million to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) to help fight back against inequality. And the statement they released seems to be in direct response to Donald Trump's comment on the horrific event.
The couple's foundation, the Clooney Foundation for Justice, was founded last year to help fight for rights for the oppressed, in the courtroom and beyond, as their official website states. According to a press release from the Clooney Foundation and SPLC, the organizations are teaming up in order to shut down extremist groups and major white supremacist organizations through funding litigation against them.
According to Deadline, the Clooneys said in a statement:
Amal and I wanted to add our voice (and financial assistance) to the ongoing fight for equality. There are no two sides to bigotry and hate. We are proud to support the Southern Poverty Law Center in its efforts to prevent violent extremism in the United States. What happened in Charlottesville, and what is happening in communities across our country, demands our collective engagement to stand up to hate.
The Clooneys' statement echoes comments that Trump made in his post-Charlottesville press conference that struck a chord with a lot of Americans. While talking to reporters at Manhattan's Trump Tower last Tuesday, he said, "You had a group on one side that was bad and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent." He also said, "There are two sides to a story. I thought what took place was a horrible moment for the country, but there are two sides to a story."
The Clooneys are making their stance clear by saying that there "are no two sides to bigotry and hate," and that's exactly what they want to stop. Like they also said in their statement, successfully overcoming an issue this huge and this violent "demands our collective engagement." They're right — with rallies happening like the one in Charlottesville, people working together in large numbers is key. This was made clear through the recent counter-protest in Boston.
The Clooneys' money and time will certainly be a huge asset in making change happen, and maybe it will even set a standard for others in their position to follow suit.