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Rep. Gomberg: Resist hate

The lawmaker from the Central Coast recounted a disturbing encounter he had in Newport during a No Hate rally.

DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF OREGON - Rep. David Gomberg, D-Central CoastRep. David Gomberg, D-Central Coast, used his legislative newsletter earlier this week to remind constituents to curb hate and discrimination in their communities.

Titling the letter, "We are All Oregonians," Gomberg recounted seeing a disturbing confrontation last month at a No Hate rally in Newport, which was a response to national "alt-right" marches.

A man was shouting and cursing at the group and then screeched out of the parking lot in his vehicle, going the wrong way.

"I manage to swerve out of his way, but another passerby could easily have been hurt or killed," Gomberg wrote.

As the man drove away, Gomberg noticed children were sitting in the back seat of the man's vehicle.

The lawmaker described the incident as characteristic of "a malaise adrift in our country."

Talk of travel bans, border walls, scrapping protections for children brought to the country illegally as children, and denigration of transgender service members have fueled "a culture of fear and vindictiveness," he wrote.

"And then one day, we wake up, as we did here in Lincoln City recently, to find swastikas painted on three small businesses," he said.

Oregonians' differences are to be celebrated and learned from, not feared, he asserted. He said the three men who defended three women who were being threatened for their religion on a train in Portland should be an example of us all. Two of the men were stabbed to death, another was wounded.

He then gave readers a tip sheet from Southern Poverty Law Center on how to fight hate:

"I hope these tips inspire you to stand up, get involved, and take a stand for decency, community and acceptance," he concluded.