At Times of Crisis, Lets Remember the Actions of Nikki Haley

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Saturday, July 18, 2020


In 2015, a white supremacist stormed into a historically African American Church in Charleston, South Carolina killing nine African American worshipers just because of the color of their skin. Five years later, we continue to see a familiar pattern. 

The murder of Geroge Floyd was conducted by those who are tasked to protect us. The shooting of religious minorities in the U.S., Oceania, and Europe are by white supremacists. These events make us feel more divided than ever. What America needs at this moment is to take lessons from former South Carolina Governor and United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley. 

Mrs. Haley served as governor of South Carolina from 2011 until 2017. When she joined the Trump administration, she served as Ambassador to the United Nations and showed a lot of courage on the UN stage. She battled against some of the world’s most dictatorial regimes in order to defend the interests of America and its allies, but her real political leadership came when her state was struck with tragedy. 

When the white supremacist in South Carolina killed 9 African Americans, she brought her state and the nation together. Hayley did not point fingers at anyone but the shooter. In tears the morning of June 18th, 2015, then-Governor Haley addressed the media by noting that the “heart and soul of South Carolina is broken,” and that, “We love our state, we love our country and we love each other.” 

In her memoir, With All Due Respect: Defending America with Grit and Grace, Mrs. Haley describes her emotions from the moment she heard about the attack of hate. She describes the conversations she had with her children and her disgust when confronted with the online content posted by the shooter. She described all the emotions of loss when she discovered her friend and colleague, Senator Clementa Pinckney, was one of the nine victims. 

Her major decision was to remove the Confederate Flag from the State Capitol Building. This move might have caused some disagreement on the right, but it was done for the better. The confederate flag is a symbol of an era where people were not given the same rights as others because of the color of their skin, not of a society that had issues and was actively trying to improve itself.

The manifesto of the terrorist in South Carolina included a picture of himself with a confederate flag. Mrs. Haley claims that, when she saw that image, she knew that something had to be done. As she noted on the Ben Shapiro Sunday Special “A flag is a living, breathing representative symbol.” “The flag needed to come down because she did not want a single child to look at that flag and feel pain, or see the killer’s face.” 

She also noted that, “[A]ny time a decision is hard you have to take a side. I could not look my kids in the eye if I did not do this. Every child that would drive by the State House… I did not want them to see that.” 

The coronavirus pandemic has added an extra layer of division in our country, even though the fight against an invisible enemy is something that is supposed to bring people together. Politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle have done little to calm down tensions. Staging photo ops and calling each other names are not viable solutions at a time when America and the world are under a number of great threats.

When I attended the AIPAC conference in Washington DC in 2018, Ambassador Nikki Haley received the largest applause from the audience, larger than that given to VP Mike Pence, and to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. I even heard a number of Democrats exclaiming their admiration for her and speculating that she would one day make a great President. 

I am really hopeful Mrs. Haley will decide to run for President in 2024 and bring some unity not only to the GOP, but also to the entire country. She’ll be ready to fight against any challenge with grit and grace!

Anastasia is a MSc candidate in Democracy and Comparative Politics at the University College London (UCL) in the United Kingdom. Born and raised in Athens, Greece, to American parents, Anastasia has also lived in the United States and in France. During her free time, she enjoys traveling the world and spending time with her two dogs, Jasper and Charlie.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.


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About Anastasia Kourtis

Anastasia is a MSc candidate in Democracy and Comparative Politics at the University College London (UCL) in the United Kingdom. Born and raised in Athens, Greece, to American parents, Anastasia has also lived in the United States and in France. During her free time, she enjoys traveling the world and spending time with her two dogs, Jasper and Charlie.

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