The mother of one of the two men fatally stabbed while defending two women from a man hurling anti-Muslim slurs in Portland wrote a letter to President Trump urging him to "take action" and "encourage all Americans to protect and watch out for one another."
"You have said that you will be president for all Americans. So, I ask you Mr. President to take action at this time. Your words and actions are meaningful, here in America and throughout the world. Please encourage all Americans to protect and watch out for one another. Please condemn any acts of violence, which result directly from hate speech & hate groups. I am praying you will use your leadership to do so," Asha Deliverance wrote in a letter published by local media and posted on Facebook.
Her son, Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, 23, was killed Friday after he joined two others trying to stop a man on a light-rail train shouting racial slurs at two young women, one of whom was wearing a hijab, authorities said. Fifty-three-year-old Ricky John Best was also killed and a third man, 21-year-old Micah David-Cole Fletcher, was hospitalized in serious condition. Police arrested Jeremy Joseph Christian, 35.
"Our family grieves, but we are proud that through his selfless action he, along with the two other men, has changed the world, when in the face of hate he did not hesitate to act with love," Deliverance said of her son.
She said the victims "fearlessly risked their lives for two young women who were threatened by an act of bigotry & terror. These brave men saw the immediate injustice and didn't hesitate to act. They recognized the truth: we are more alike than we are different. To ride the train home without being assaulted because of the color of your skin or your religious beliefs, is an inalienable right."
Trump was criticized for not commenting on the attack when it first happened. On Monday, three days later, he called what happened "unacceptable" and said the victims "were standing up to hate and intolerance."
The violent attacks in Portland on Friday are unacceptable. The victims were standing up to hate and intolerance. Our prayers are w/ them.— President Trump (@POTUS) May 29, 2017