Down at the Crossroads supports Black Lives Matter. It’s a very simple statement and one that is not up for debate. And just so we are abundantly clear- by making this statement, we are saying in no uncertain terms that we absolutely support the ongoing protests against racial injustice that are currently occurring (now worldwide!) and we stand with the protesters risking their lives as they fight daily for their voices to finally be heard. We are saying -shouting- Black Lives Matter!
Look at our history- our entire society is built on white supremacy and that is an undeniable fact. It was built on the backs of people of color- specifically and mostly, Black people. It was built with their blood and bones, do not turn away from this. The last handful of years have -beyond a shadow of a doubt- demonstrated what so many have refused to see for hundreds of years: the systems meant to organize, guide, and run our society in the United States (and across the entire globe, not for nothing) are infested by abusive and narrow-minded individuals that through their own actions and words embody a distinct and severe lack of compassion, sense of responsibility, and simple human consideration for the people they are meant to serve. Sometimes even gleefully so. This is horrific. It needs to stop.
With all of this around us, simple words can sometimes feel like a mouse in a maelstrom, but we continue to shout in spite of it.
We say loudly and clearly here- we recognize the atrocities committed by law enforcement in their systemic abuse, their outright murder of people of color, and we are calling them out here and now for the injustices they have committed and those they continue to perpetuate. We call for swift justice to be delivered to these oppressors to the fullest extent of the law, but by even stronger forces if need be, if our systems continue to fail us!
We say loudly and clearly here- we see those in positions of government exploiting their power for monetary purposes and how they capitalize on the fears of their citizens for their own benefit, twisting the use of social media in an effort to keep themselves seated and safe, with fat bank accounts. We call for their machinations to end, by ballot preferably, but by even stronger forces if need be, if our systems continue to fail us!
We say loudly and clearly here- to all people of color: we see you, we hear you, and we stand with you. We say your names. We call for the end of your oppression and repression. We call for all of the wrongs committed against you to be righted, using whatever means necessary on a state and federal level, but by even stronger forces if need be, if our systems continue to fail us!
At first, we didn’t think to make a statement from the public platform of our podcast because both of us have been extremely vocal on our own in our individual accounts. Our individual social media likely have more reach than any group or fan page we may run just because of algorithmic weirdness, but when you examine that idea a little more closely, it’s not the point. After a lot of thought and discussion between the two of us, we’ve decided that it doesn’t really matter which voice of ours is louder. We wanted it to be fully known and from this platform specifically, especially since so many continue to remain silent.
So, we say these things as Chris and Tara and we say them as Down at the Crossroads. We say them as teachers and authors. We say them in every single capacity or role either of us sit in, personally or professionally. We say Black Lives Matter.
In the past few weeks, we have been spending a lot of time educating ourselves further on racial injustice and writing to our local (and not-so-local) politicians. Whenever possible, we have been donating to change-dedicated and Black-organized groups to support their efforts. There has also been heavy reflection on the privileges we ourselves hold and the subsequent parts we play in our white supremacist society, along with thinking deeply about anything further we can do. A part of this mission and dialogue is to realize to what extent we have been an unknowing contributor to racial inequality as well as how best we can go about dismantling that crippling and suffocating reality for others.
We want to be more than just inclusive, we now actively strive to be anti-racist. To do this right, it’s going to take a whole lot of work, but it’s a responsibility we gladly take on with the idea that through these actions, we may assist in real and sustainable change. We hope you join us.
Chris & Tara