gastonia resident: As a Gastonia resident and as a current City Council member I wish to extend more than thoughts and prayers to a community that is hurting, according to NOW Magazine. Thoughts and prayers are no longer enough so I extend a hand. Just as any other American, the stars and stripes cover their right to live peacefully here in America. A hand to work together to bridge the gap of misunderstanding and miseducation. It was only last October that I attended a vigil at the local synagogue to remember the Jewish victims of the Pittsburgh Synagogue massacre. I also extend my time and presence in a pledge to do whatever I need to to make all constituents of my community feel safe, appreciated and welcome. (www.immigrantscanada.com). As reported in the news.