George Floyd was murdered by Derek Chauvin exactly one year ago today.
Justice will not be served until no one else dies at the hands of systemic racism.
① RECOGNIZE PRIVILEGE
Many folks deny the existence of white privilege, claiming, “My life is hard, too!” And that might be true! No one is saying your life isn’t hard. But if you are white, your life is not difficult because of your skin color. It can be difficult for many reasons. But being white is not one of them.
So be willing to risk your comfort and privilege to dismantle anti-Blackness, even and especially in moments when no Black folks are present. This means speaking up and speaking out.
② RACISM IS NOT A THING OF THE PAST
Many of us are taught about racism as a thing of the past – something that the civil rights movement of the 1960s and MLK cured. But this is far from the trust. Racism is deeply entrenched into the fabric of the American system. The US was, quite literally, built by stolen and enslaved African people. The entire economy was built by, powered by, and succeeded because of slavery.
Many (if not most) of the systems in the country are built to preserve racism – like voter suppression and the police system. Don’t forget that American policing was built on policing enslaved Black folks – the first Slave Patrol formed in 1704 was designed to keep enslaved Africans and African Americans from running away as well as finding and punishing them if they did. These Slave later became police departments. Read more about the police system here.
We must work to abolish the systems that preserve white supremacy and systemic racism.
③ IT IS OUR RESPONSIBILTY AS NON-BLACK PEOPLE TO EDUCATE OURSELVES
There are tons of books, websites, and blogs about this. If you don’t know where to start, I’d recommend Ijeoma Oluo’s So You Want To Talk About Race. It’s a fantastic and very illuminating read. If you’re not Black, I strongly, strongly encourage you to read it as soon as possible. You should also subscribe to Rachel Cargle’s Patreon and Sonya Renee Taylor’s Patreon. They both provides amazing donation-based education there.
④ FOLLOW BLACK FOLKS
Follow Black folks who educate on these issues. Support their work through amplifying it and compensating them for their labor if you’re able.
Here are some suggestions:
@theconsciouslee, @ihartericka, @themilajam, @ashleemariepreston, @munroebergdorf, @ijeomaoluo, @the_yvesdropper, @janayathefuture, @rachel_cargle, @raquel_willis, @theconsciouskid.
⑤ PUT YOUR ACTIONS WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS!
Donate to Black organizations. Suggestions here.
Qualified immunity is a judicial doctrine that protects government officials from being held personally liable (responsible) for breaking the law. (e.g. using excessive force or killing someone while on the job) as long as the officer did not break a “clearly established” law. In summary, qualified immunity basically protects cops when they break the law. This is wrong. Cops should be held accountable, like everyone else.PETITION TO OPPOSE VOTER SUPPRESSION
Georgia Republicans have enacted America’s most restrictive, racist voter suppression law since Jim Crow — even criminalizing giving water to voters in long lines. And the GOP is just getting started, pushing similar laws in dozens of other states.
Hundreds of corporations and executives have signed onto an open letter opposing discriminatory legislation. But many — including AT&T, Coca-Cola, Southwest Airlines, Home Depot, and Walmart — refused to take a stand for democracy, and their silence is deafening. Worse, even as they say they don’t want to play politics, these corporations continue to contribute to the politicians who support the racist voter suppression bills.
This is unacceptable. Join Black Voters Matter in calling on America’s corporations to immediately divest from ALL politicians who support voter suppression policies and to support Senate passage of the For The People Act of 2021 and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.