Aug. 12 is a volatile, traumatizing day in Charlottesville. This year, there were no official local-based commemorations for the life that was lost and the people who were injured on that day in 2017. But a demonstration was held that afternoon related to that Thursday’s Albemarle County School Board meeting. It was attended on the ground and in vehicles by several local groups; other organizations, including Black Lives Matter 757, attended the event in the name of solidarity. In all movements, there are varying opinions on how to address the issues at hand, and that speaks to the complexity of the things that have plagued America for more than 400 years. Thursday’s demonstration was no exception.
During the course of reporting on and processing the events of Aug. 12, 2017, and Aug. 12, 2021, a photo post that included BLM757 was published. It did not meet our editorial standards of giving parties the opportunity to rebut statements made about them and acknowledging the ongoing history of harmful media coverage of Black activist organizations. After a discussion on Saturday, Aug. 14, with Japharii Jones, the leader of BLM757, the entire photo post was deleted. We regret the error and apologize for the anguish it caused. We are working to ensure that such missteps do not occur again. We work closely with local activist groups to represent their voices accurately and understand the value of building trust in media with organizations and groups that don’t.