The following was written, compiled, by an 18 year young lady who is passionately concerned by what she is witnessing in our society. You’ve got to love her energy, passion and ability to gather lots of supportive information. Good on her!!
Let’s hope lots of her peers have woken up and realize this upcoming election is for all the marbles.
“As all of you know, our country is dealing with two pandemics right now: the COVID-19 pandemic and a racial pandemic. On May 25th, George Floyd was killed by police officers who held their knee to his neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. He was murdered by a cop because of a suspected counterfeit $20 bill. This event set into motion a revolution.
I was inspired by a letter written by Rhett McLaughlin titled “Letter to a White Man.” In this letter, he addresses his former self and writes about the troubles that are plaguing our country and have been since its start. I strongly encourage you to read this letter or listen to his recording of it.
Read here: https://medium.com/@rhettmc/letter-to-a-white-man-fbe6efd908b9
or Listen here: https://www.instagram.com/tv/CA3sSl4DT8I/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
I think that this letter gives a very clear explanation of the injustices that are occurring in our country and how white people can work to abolish the injustices.
Inspired by this letter, I am writing this email as a call for action within my friends, family, and community. This country needs systematic change. There is no world where people should be targeted based on the color of their skin. But this issue is not new. Our country was built on the premise that white is better than black. It does not matter if you don’t believe that you are racist. Systematic racism runs deep in our country and will continue to do so until we make a systematic change.
It is not my job as a white person to speak for the black community. All white people are being asked to do is use our privilege to fight this. It is our job to speak up and spread the word about the current state of this situation and to not inject our own opinions on how the black community should be reacting. If you are not a black person, you do not understand what it means to be a black person in America.
All I ask is that you take the time to read some of the articles I attach to this email. The best way to understand this situation is to educate yourself on the entire situation and spread the word.
Here are a few articles and websites I think deserve to be read.
What is White Privilege, Really? https://www.tolerance.org/magazine/fall-2018/what-is-white-privilege-really
Black Lives Matter: https://blacklivesmatter.com/about/
No More Money for the Police: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/30/opinion/george-floyd-police-funding.html
How the Supreme Court Lets Cops Get Away with Murder: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/29/opinion/Minneapolis-police-George-Floyd.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article
Of Course There Are Protests. The State is Failing Black People.: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/29/opinion/george-floyd-minneapolis.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article
SAY THEIR NAMES: Here is a list of just some of the people that were targeted based on the color of their skin. The first step towards justice is to acknowledge the victims and say their names.
GEORGE FLOYD – https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/31/us/george-floyd-investigation.html
BREONNA TAYLOR – https://www.nytimes.com/article/breonna-taylor-police.html
AHMAUD ARBERY – nytimes.com/article/ahmaud-arbery-shooting-georgia.html
ATATIANA JEFFERSON – https://www.cnn.com/2019/12/20/us/atatiana-jefferson-death-officer-indicted/index.html
KATHRYN JOHNSTON – https://www.aclu.org/other/kathryn-johnston-and-police-system-failure
ANTHONY HILL – https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2019/10/14/anthony-hill-shooting-robert-olsen-found-not-guilty-murder/3976988002/
KEVIN DAVIS – https://www.ajc.com/blog/news/dekalb-officer-involved-kevin-davis-shooting-was-him/b39YoC6QPD9OTUmcc4d2qL/
WALTER SCOTT – https://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/08/us/south-carolina-officer-is-charged-with-murder-in-black-mans-death.html
JORDAN DAVIS – https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/11/18/fla-loud-music-murder-firing-into-car-full-of-teens-playing-rap-music-not-self-defense-court-rules/
RENISHA MCBRIDE – https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-28470246
TAMIR RICE – https://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/23/us/in-tamir-rice-shooting-in-cleveland-many-errors-by-police-then-a-fatal-one.html
PHILANDO CASTILE – https://www.vox.com/2016/7/7/12116288/minnesota-police-shooting-philando-castile-falcon-heights-video
SANDRA BLAND – https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/07/us/sandra-bland-video-brian-encinia.html
TRAYVON MARTIN – https://www.cnn.com/2013/06/05/us/trayvon-martin-shooting-fast-facts/index.html
OSCAR GRANT – https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/10-years-since-Oscar-Grant-s-death-What-13489585.php
JOHN CRAWFORD – https://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/24/surveillance-video-walmart-shooting-john-crawford-police
ALTON STERLING – https://www.vox.com/2016/7/6/12105380/alton-sterling-police-shooting-baton-rouge-louisiana
NICHOLAS THOMAS – https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/jun/19/nicholas-thomas-shot-in-back-police
AMADOU DIALLO – https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/19/nyregion/amadou-diallo-mother-eric-garner.html
ERIC GARNER – https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2019/08/20/eric-garner-timeline-chokehold-death-daniel-pantaleo-fired/2059708001/
& so many more.
PETITIONS: If you wish to, I have pasted a few links to petitions surrounding the current situation. They take less than a minute to sign. Some of them are calling for the arrest of the other 3 cops involved with George Floyd’s death, while others are calling for support of the numerous other black lives lost to police brutality and general support of the movement.
- #JusticeforFloyd: Demand the officers who killed George Floyd are charged with murder: https://act.colorofchange.org/sign/justiceforfloyd_george_floyd_minneapolis or text FLOYD to 55156 to have the link sent to you.
- #JusticeforBre: Police officers who killed Breonna Taylor must be FIRED and CHARGED: https://act.colorofchange.org/sign/justiceforbre-breonna-taylor-officers-fired?source=coc_main_website or text ENOUGH to 55156 to have the link sent to you.
- #JusticeforAhmaud: District Attorneys George Barnhill & Jackie Johnson must be REMOVED from office: https://act.colorofchange.org/sign/demand-justice-ahmaud/ or text JUSTICE to 55156 to have the link sent to you.
- State of Emergency: End the War on Black people! https://act.colorofchange.org/sign/state-emergency-black-people-are-dying?source=coc_main_website or text DEMANDS to 55156 to have the link directly sent to you.
- Raise the Degree (Petition asking to raise the degree that the police officer was charged that murdered George Floyd from third degree to first degree): https://www.change.org/p/minneapolis-district-attorney-raise-the-degree?recruiter=1098599238&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=psf_combo_share_initial&utm_term=psf_combo_share_abi&recruited_by_id=960efe90-a206-11ea-8907-8fc7af712ec3
- Mandatory Life Sentence for Police Brutality: https://www.change.org/p/department-of-justice-mandatory-life-sentence-for-police-brutality
- Justice for Tony McDade: https://secure.everyaction.com/BAMRHpdpAUS8Rle7I00UrA2
- Reclaim the Block: https://www.reclaimtheblock.org/home
These are just a few to start signing. There are numerous other petitions out there that need your support. If you choose to donate to these petitions, please consider not donating through these major websites. Websites such as Change.org are not the best way to donate your money to see direct and real change. Below I am going to list more direct organizations that need your money and donations.
ORGANIZATIONS & DONATIONS: I will also link different organizations where you can donate. These organizations range from bail funds striving to post bail for peaceful protestors who were arrested across the country while others provide resources and supplies to peaceful protestors. I encourage you to do your own research to find the organization that best suits your views on this situation. The links below are organizations I feel represent my stance on this.
California Bay Area –
Bay Area Anti Repression Committee: https://antirepressionbayarea.com/
Anti-Police Terror Project: http://www.antipoliceterrorproject.org/donate
Silicon Valley Democratic Socialists of America: https://siliconvalleydsa.org/donations/
Oakland People’s Breakfast: https://linktr.ee/PBO
Pacific Northwest –
Northwest Community Bail Fund: https://donorbox.org/ncbf
The BLM Seattle Bail Fund: https://blacklivesseattle.org/bail-fund/
Southern California –
People’s City Council Freedom Fund (Los Angeles): https://www.gofundme.com/f/peoples-city-council-ticket-fund
National Bail Fund Network: https://www.communityjusticeexchange.org/nbfn-directory
The Bail Project: https://secure.givelively.org/donate/the-bail-project
Reclaim the Block: https://secure.everyaction.com/zae4prEeKESHBy0MKXTIcQ2
Minnesota Freedom Fund: https://minnesotafreedomfund.org/#
PROTESTS: If you can, go to the protests in your area. Showing up and supporting this movement is a simple way to get involved. The majority of these protests are PEACEFUL. The few that have escalated to riots are caused more from police pressure than the protestors. If you do attend these protests, please stay safe and be aware of your surroundings.
Learn about the history of protesting and rioting in the country before you make assumptions about the ones that are occurring right now: https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2020/06/riots-are-american-way-george-floyd-protests/612466/
Support your black-owned businesses. During these hard times with COVID and the incidents following the death of George Floyd, it is especially important to support black-owned businesses. Here is a link to a list published by the SF Chronicle for black-owned food businesses in the Bay Area: https://projects.sfchronicle.com/2020/black-owned-restaurants/
Look up the businesses in your communities and think about supporting them with your purchases.
Another simple way you can help is by watching this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCgLa25fDHM
This is an educational video that will be donating all ad revenue towards bail funds, helping pay for families funerals, and advocacy organizations. There are additional links to petitions in the description of the video. If you don’t have the time to watch and listen, you can play the video in a separate tab with the volume muted and still contribute to the cause.
Finally, there is a running document with up to date information on current events, petitions, donations, protests, officials to call and email, and additional ways to educate yourself on this situation. The link to this is http://www.ally.wiki
This is not supposed to be a comfortable conversation. It is important to acknowledge your discomfort, but it is even more important to understand that since the beginning of this country black people have always been the victims of racism and discomfort. If you have any questions, feel free to ask me. If I can’t answer or it is not my place to, I can get you in touch with someone who can. I am still learning so much myself.
In 20 years, when your children and grandchildren ask you about the BLM protests of 2020, which side do you want to be on? Do you want to tell your children that you were silent or do you want to tell them about how you fought for equity and equality of all people in the United States?
Please forward this email to your friends and family or anyone I missed. If the information is not new to you, great! Keep educating yourself and your peers.
If you are going to take anything from this email, please take this: register to vote and use your voice. Educate yourself before making a vote in November.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. I appreciate this, but you do not owe anything to me. We owe it to our black communities.
White Silence = Violence. This situation is not going to be over in a week. We are in this fight for the long run and are prepared to fight until we see real change take place.”
I am not BLACK, but I SEE YOU.
I am not BLACK, but I HEAR YOU.
I am not BLACK, but I MOURN YOU.
I am not BLACK, but I WILL FIGHT FOR YOU.
I understand that I will never understand, however, I STAND.