To Our Portuguese Community,
We are deeply saddened by the deaths happening in the African American communities across the country. We express our condolences to the families impacted by these deaths, horrific reminders that we must never relax our guard against racism and injustice, in any form.
As an organization working for the growth and progression of Portuguese-Americans who came here for the American Dream, and a community that has integrated well into American society and embraced ethnic diversity in our own families, we must do our part to promote the dialogue around this issue affecting our African-American brothers and sisters.
To that end, PALCUS is planning a series of forums to address the issues of racial injustice and inequality around the country and within our own community, as well as many other topics. Some of the topics we will be addressing include:
· Diversity in our community
· Law enforcement reform
· Criminal justice system reform
These are big topics that affect our community directly, and we strongly encourage your participation in these conversations. Do you have suggestions for topics or guests to be interviewed? These are your conversations. PALCUS exists to serve you, the entire Portuguese community and together we can start a dialogue that is long overdue.
For those that feel compelled to take action, we encourage you to peacefully stand up for your beliefs and ask that you not resort to violence. One of the best ways for your voice to be heard is to contact your elected officials at the local, state and federal levels. Continue to make your voice heard.
As Toni Morrison (American novelist, essayist, book editor, and college professor) said: "If there is a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, you must be the one to write it." Before us is the opportunity to write our future as a society committed to ethnic, racial and civic justice, inclusion, and education. To put into words what has to be said and to turn those words into actions. Now is the time to work together and do our part to seek a change so that no one is judged or defined by the color of their skin. We all have to speak up and acknowledge what is right in front of us.
To be silent is to be complicit. PALCUS will not be complicit.
At hand is an issue that, at its core, affects us all, independent of party affiliation or political background. We must not fall prey to prescribed definitions and terminology, as it transcends labels and demographics and checkboxes. At hand is an issue of humanity. PALCUS stands for humanity.
Black Lives Matter. PALCUS stands with the Black community, and together we can pursue racial justice and equality.
*This message has been approved by the PALCUS Board of Directors.