"The question is, how do we give you the confidence to realize that you are the government, and that you have the power? I learned an important lesson about this during my visit to Germany in 1998, as a guest of the Schiller Institute, where I addressed public meetings and met with legislators and civic leaders. I learned that the power that brought down the Berlin Wall, was a simple candle.
"In 1989, the economic conditions had become intolerable in eastern Europe, including East Germany. People were getting desperate, but felt helpless in the face of a communist regime that was heavily armed, and known as one of the most ruthless dictatorships in the world.
"But the people began gathering every Friday night at a church in the city of Leipzig, where they could discuss the crisis they were facing. One day, in August 1989, a few of them decided to hold a silent vigil for freedom, by standing outside the church holding candles. They did this every Monday night, and it became a rallying-point for the people, who saw no other way to assert their humanity, and defiance of the regime. By October of 1989, there were 150,000 people gathered outside the church in Leipzig. The army and police were called up, and told to suppress the people -- even shoot them -- but they refused to do so. The regime decided that its only chance to maintain credibility, was to allow free passage of the people to the West. Within weeks, the Berlin Wall, and the East German communist government, were all swept away, without bloodshed.
"The power of the candlelight vigil -- in a period of profound social and economic crisis -- helped bring down the infamous Berlin Wall of communist tyranny. Let us use the power of the candlelight vigil, here in Washington, DC, our nation's capital, to bring down the Wall of Confederate racism and hate, that stands behind the murderous effort to close DC General Hospital. Let us give the people of Washington, DC, a way to rally to defend their lives and the lives of their loved ones, and to promote the General Welfare of all U.S. citizens, by holding candlelight vigils every week, to save DC General Hospital."