The Moment is Now: #Charlottesville #RacialJustice
August 16, 2017
Jane Doe Inc. expresses our deepest condolences for the victims who died and were injured as a result of the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 12th. We are also deeply troubled by the vandalism of the Holocaust Memorial in Boston, Massachusetts; an example of how white supremacy, anti-semitism, and racism are present in our communities. We stand in solidarity with People of Color, Jews, Muslims, LGBQ/T, and other marginalized communities who are experiencing renewed pain, fear, and trauma as the violence and its aftermath has unfolded. We also call out the hateful and incendiary speech and actions by some of our national leaders who have given legitimacy to the values and beliefs upon which white supremacy stands
Racial equity is core to the mission of JDI because racial violence, oppression and sexual and domestic violence are inextricably linked. Another central tenet is that we need to listen to survivors, which includes listening to victims of race based violence. By truly listening and showing up in support of survivors of sexual and domestic violence as well as survivors of individual and institutionalized racism, we honor a person's autonomy, dignity, and self-determination.
Earlier this week, the JDI staff met to talk, to listen, and to offer each other support. We were compelled to ask ourselves what else we can do to deepen our understanding of the white supremacy movement in the United States; to hold ourselves, the Coalition and each other accountable; to be in solidarity with and center the experiences of people of color; to undo institutional racism; to demonstrate that, for aspiring white allies, this commitment requires recognizing that allyship is not a single activity but requires showing up and sustained engagement; to articulate how white supremacy, settler colonialism, and other forms of oppression are connected to the root causes of sexual and and domestic violence; and to live out our mission of creating a world both based on equity and justice and free of fear and violence.
In our discussions and work we have found the following resources to be helpful:
"White Supremacy Culture" in Dismantling Racism by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun identifies how habits reinforce norms and standards that privilege white people and negatively impact people of color.
"Start where you are" published by How Matters calls on people with privilege and power to not make excuses and take action now..
"Ten Ways to Fight Hate: A Community Response Guide" from the Southern Poverty Law Center outlines specific action steps based on the notion that hate is learned and an attack on one is an attack on us all.
"The Fight for the Soul of White America" by Chris Crass provides a succinct article directed to white people to read, share and discuss their role in uniting "multiracial democratic values and destroy the hold of white supremacy in white communities."
Our staff conversation gave us a renewed sense of commitment to advancing racial equity, a deeper connection as a community, and a reinforced understanding that our collective liberation
is tied to one another.
We want you to know that we are here as a Coalition with you and with others - available to listen, engage in dialogue and support action steps.
We welcome you to share your thoughts and reflections with us. Email, call, comment on Facebook or Twitter.
From the JDI Team: Maureen Gallagher, Diana Mancera, Tina Nappi, Debra Robbin, Toni Troop, Catherine Utt, and Ariel Valdes