Dear Members, Partners, and Supporters:
You might have noticed there was not a Monday Morning Memo last week. I guess I had a bit of writer’s block. I couldn’t stop thinking about
. I tried to imagine what it would be like to have a group chase me and confront me for no reason at all. I tried to remember the most frightened I had ever been, then multiplying that by a shotgun and .357 magnum handgun. Even then, I am certain I will never know how
On Tuesday morning we woke to the news of a woman, a white woman, accusing a black man of threatening her in Central Park. Clearly, she felt her privilege allowed her to have her dog off leash.
, the black man, was bird watching and asked her to put her dog on its leash. Apparently, that request was the same as threatening her life and that of her dog. He was bird watching! Is there anything in the world less threatening than someone bird watching?
And now, we have all seen a man, a black man,
, choked to death in a violent and senseless act on a street in Minneapolis.
My heart breaks for the families of
and the families of every other victim of racial violence; names we have heard and those we have not.
This has got to stop.
We cannot stand on the sidelines shaking our heads at the senseless killing of black people in this country. Individually and as a community, we must do serious self-examination and decide if we are true advocates for equality and inclusion or not.
I want to share with you something written by Louise Chernin, CEO of GSBA, the LGBT chamber of commerce in Seattle; her words capture so much of what is needed right now: