Trigger warning: This post contains thoughts on racism and the Black Lives Matter movement that are still forming. Please read and feel free to share your comments, along with links to other sources/leaders/ideas. Please also be kind.
No matter how long I teach, I will always be amazed at the things students feel comfortable sharing with me. Even first-time students will confide things perhaps better saved for a priest or lawyer. Incontinence, IBS, marital woes—nothing seems to be off limits.
Nor should anything be off limits. As a teacher, my first responsibility is to create a safe space for students to explore.
In the wake of George Floyd’s murder and the protests it spurred, I’ve had many individuals of various backgrounds ask the same terribly complicated question: What do you think about all of this?
And the truth is, I really don’t know.
After many days of empty, no-answer answering, I finally realized: I don’t need to know. I just need to listen.
In loving memory of Trayvon Martin, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and so many countless others, here is a list of resources for everyone who wants to listen to, understand, and ultimately help the movement.
From the mission statement, What We Believe:
Four years ago, what is now known as the Black Lives Matter Global Network began to organize. It started out as a chapter-based, member-led organization whose mission was to build local power and to intervene when violence was inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.
Listen to Activist Interviews
Below, Patrisse Khan-Cullors shares her thoughts on the future of the Black Lives Matter movement. For more Activist Shorts, visit Blacklivesmatter.com/activist-shorts.
Watch ‘What Matters’ Webisodes
This web series “combines documentary narrative with interviews to illuminate specific, timely issues, aiming to create safe dialogue to promote freedom, justice, and collective liberation.” Stream episode 1 below and visit Blacklivesmatter.com/whatmatters to watch the full series.
Vote for Change: #WhatMatters2020
The What Matters 2020 campaign aims to inspire and motivate individuals to vote for leaders who truly serve their best interests. Through the BLM website, you can pledge to take action, register to vote, and make donations.
From the BLM website:
BLM’s #WhatMatters2020 is a campaign aimed to maximize the impact of the BLM movement by galvanizing BLM supporters and allies to the polls in the 2020 U.S Presidential Election to build collective power and ensure candidates are held accountable for the issues that systematically and disproportionately impact Black and under-served communities across the nation.
Visit Blacklivesmatter.com/what-matters-2020 to sign the pledge and get started.