AMERICA

After Nazi Salute in Arlington, Neighbors Rally Against Hate

A photo of six people doing a Nazi salute at a shopping center in Northern Virginia Friday morning energized an entire neighborhood to reject racist hate Friday night.

Ten times as many people showed up to the Dominion Hills Centre in Arlington to reject hate as who gathered earlier in the day to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of the American Nazi Party's founder.

"My cousins, second cousins, uncles and aunts went to concentration camps and died," Arlington resident Renee Gorsky said.

She attended the rally to honor her family. Her parents fled Germany for Brazil before the Holocaust. Gorsky said she spoke with her parents on Friday.

"I showed them the picture of the Nazis here on Dominion Hills on my iPhone, through Skype, and my father became so distraught," she said as a crowd sang "God Bless America."

The rally was organized online within hours. Residents brought their children and held signs that they made.

George Lincoln Rockwell was shot by a former member of his group as he left a laundromat in the shopping center on Aug. 25, 1967. A photo that circulated online on Friday shows five men and a woman giving Nazi salutes as they face a flag with a swastika.

Arlington residents said they were horrified.

"To see the Nazi flag in our neighborhood raised was really disturbing," one woman said.

Many people who attended the rally said they were aware of the history of the shopping center -- which now has a pizzeria and a pet salon -- but it's Nazi history had no modern relevance to them, until now. 

Contact Us