LE CLAIRE, Iowa — On Saturday, July 25, dozens of protestors gathered at City Hall after hate flyers were anonymously distributed throughout the town.
"A white nationalist group delivered flyers to our town - just threw them in people’s driveways," said protest organizer Travis Schlitter.
Schlitter said the flyer warned those in the community to maintain "social distance" from people of color who disproportionately contract COVID-19.
"When [those flyers] hit my town, my little town of LeClaire, I thought it was important that I made sure our voices were just as loud as their," said Schlitter.
Several speakers shouted into the megaphone to urge residents to speak up, and speak out, against racism in town.
"[My daughters] get to see people standing up for them for the - probably the first time ever," said attendee Heidi Conner.
Conner, a LeClaire resident, said she is the step-mother to two adopted black teenage girls.
"I never experienced being judged by the color of my skin until I would be out with my daughters," said Conner with tears.
Conner said the Black Lives Matter movement has given her daughters the platform to discover themselves as young black women.
"[This movement] is the most important thing going on in our life right now," said Conner.
Schlitter said he hopes people from all Quad City communities are listening to his message.
"This wasn’t just about LeClaire. This was our community, the Quad Cities, saying we don’t want this in the Quad Cities," said Schlitter.
Schlitter said the only way communities can fix systematic racism is by working together and saying "enough is enough."
"We as parents need to continue to empower our kids to vote, to rally, to be there when there’s injustices," said Conner. "Eventually, we’ll have a world where we won’t have to have these discussions anymore."