The woman who raised me was born in 1935. Her mother, born in 1904. 116 years have elapsed and yet we share the same story. Yes, there are notable differences – education, socioeconomic class, and legislation that elevates my right to live in a country free of legalized segregation. There has been progress, slow, but progress none the less.This progress is not enough. It has been just a trickle and with it Black existence has continued to be second class. The diary of my life is filled with same stories of racism, discrimination and the frustration of navigating society as the Black women who have come before me.
The words above are from Whitney Mestelle, Executive Director at Inclusive Idaho, a leader who is one of the most important voices in the west, with vast implications for our nation.
I write today because I am increasingly disheartened by the growing echo of the many who have proclaimed that they cannot support #BlackLivesMatter because of something they “know” or have heard about the BLM organization.Black Lives Matter is a movement, a fact, and a way of thinking and acting, more than it is any one person or organization. The work of racial justice and equality matters too much for the future of Black Americans and all Americans to remove yourself from this work on the premise of complete alignment with one organization.
Read Whitney Mestelle’s full post about
the true meaning of Black Lives Matter.
Inclusivity is the solution to the societal barriers of belonging and advancement for minority groups, women, people with disabilities, refugees, and those with marginalized gender and sexual orientations, according to the Inclusive Idaho website. “We aim to create a more inclusive Idaho for all Idahoans through advocacy, education, programs, community events, and policy and legislation reform.” Read more at inclusiveidaho.org