During the past week we have been overwhelmed with stories and videos of state sanctioned violence and murder against black people. Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and now George Floyd join the list of black lives taken, along with Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Philando Castile, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray and hundreds of others whose names most do not know because there was no recording.
There is Christian Cooper’s experience in Central Park and the arrest of the CNN reporter in Minneapolis to illustrate the endless racist aggressions perpetrated against black people every day.
Having to live in a world where a person feels their very life is constantly under threat because of the color of their skin is violence—circumstance that many of our staff, coaches, as well as the kids and their communities we coach live with daily.
What can we do both individually and collectively? How can we reinforce our solidarity, stand together, bear witness, and support and join our communities in the fight for justice and change?
We can refuse to accept racism in all its forms—from a racist joke, micro-aggressions, racist language directed toward football players taking a knee, and others who demonstrate peacefully against state sanctioned violence in black communities. We can each find actions we are comfortable with—calling out racism when we see it—and join with others so that we are part of the growing and collective resistance to violence against black lives.
With this work we join the growing anti-racist movement that will strengthen society’s ability to stand together against the tyranny of white supremacy and racism that legitimizes aggression against black communities.
Janet Carter, President & CEO of Coaching Corps