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Top Stories: TAMU Cancels White Nationalist Rally; Mayor Mike Rawlings To Address Charlottesville

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The top local stories this morning from KERA News:

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings will hold a press conference at noon Tuesday to address the white nationalist rally over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, which left three dead and several injured.

In a statement released Monday evening, Rawlings said the city “joins the rest of the country in mourning Heather Heyer, as well as the two fallen Virginia State Police troopers. People that support Neo-Nazis and white supremacists should be called out for what they are: pure evil. There is no place for such bigotry in our society.”

The Dallas City Council announced it will also vote over the next few weeks on whether the city should remove all monuments of the Confederacy throughout the city and rename schools, city parks and other public facilities named after Confederate figures.

Dallas’ response comes after Texas A&M University called off a planned white supremacist rally with alt-right leader Richard Spencer on its campus next month. A university statement yesterday cited concerns "about the safety of its students, faculty, staff, and the public."

A former A&M student named Preston Wiginton said Saturday's "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, inspired him to organize a "White Lives Matter" rally in College Station.

The cancellation came amid mounting political pressure in Texas.

“Texas will not engage in or tolerate bigotry, hatred and violence,” state Rep. Helen Giddings of Dallas said on the House floor Monday night. “We must make clear that the Neo-Nazis, the white supremacists, the white nationalists, the Klu Klux Klan and their enablers are not welcome here.”

An anti-white supremacy rally is scheduled in Dallas this Saturday. Protesters are expected to demand the removal of a 60-foot-tall Confederate monument in Pioneer Park Cemetery.

Other stories this morning:

  • This summer, KERA’s education reporters are profiling people making a difference with North Texas children. We're calling them American Graduate Champions. Today, we meet Reggie Moss, a mentor to men of all ages, but mostly fathers struggling to raise their kids. Moss works at a faith-based nonprofit in Fort Worth. KERA’s Bill Zeeble reports Moss is on a mission to make better dads.

You can listen to North Texas stories weekdays at 8:22 a.m. and 6:20 p.m. on KERA 90.1 FM.

Former KERA staffer Stephanie Kuo is an award-winning radio journalist who worked as a reporter and administrative producer at KERA, overseeing and coordinating editorial content reports and logistics for the Texas Station Collaborative – a statewide news consortium including KERA, KUT in Austin, Houston Public Media and Texas Public Radio in San Antonio.