A wise man, otherwise known as civil rights advocate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
Though the advocate's days of civil unrest are long gone, his quote still rings true, as exemplified by a moving photo taken at a protest in South Carolina. Last weekend, at a scene not too far off from the ones King used to see, protestors gathered at the South Carolina state building to protest the ruling that took down the Confederate flag from the state capitol following the Charleston, S.C., murders of nine African-American churchgoers. The KKK along with other "white pride" supporters were in attendance.
Apparently, a white supremacist protestor wearing a National Socialist Movement T-shirt became dehydrated and required medical attention. In an ironic twist of fate, he was helped by black police officer Leroy Smith.
Rob Godfrey, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley's deputy chief of staff, snapped the photo and posted to social media, where it quickly went viral.
"not an uncommon example of humanity in SC: Leroy Smith helps white supremacist to shelter & water as heat bears down," read his caption.
According to Yahoo, there was only one arrest for disorderly conduct and the officer in the photo was praised for his actions.
"We want to thank the multiple law enforcement agencies involved today for an excellent response and for assistance in keeping protesters and those on the grounds safe during the rallies," Smith said in a statement.
Love came face to face with hate — and persevered. Dr. King would have been proud.