“We know, and we insist, that black lives matter,” MIT President L. Rafael Reif said at Tuesday’s MIT Community Vigil. “That black lives are worthy and complex and inspiring. That every black person is unique and beautifully human, and that every black person of every age, everywhere, deserves dignity and decency and respect.” Watch the Vigil.
“What has happened is not simply the results of a few bad people doing bad things,” said Institute Community and Equity Officer John Dozier at Tuesday’s MIT Community Vigil in response to the killing of George Floyd and the loss of other Black lives due to racism and police brutality, and to recent protests across the country. “Rather it speaks to the systemic dehumanizing and undervaluing of Black lives, borne out of slavery, reinforced by Jim Crow law, and promoted even today by media stereotypes. I’m here as a Black man, son, husband, and a father, who is in deep pain from watching history repeat itself over and over again.” Watch.
There is much work to do in the goal of eliminating racism in America. One important way to open past-due dialogues is through self-education via historic, sociological, and literary resources. As we end the week, members of the MIT community are encouraged to delve into free online offerings relating to Black studies and Black history — at MIT and elsewhere — by way of MIT OpenCourseWare, the MIT Press, and the MIT Black History Project, among others.
Greater Boston Area
Offer money, supplies, or your time to these organizations furthering the call for equality and equity in Boston and beyond—because the moment may come to an end, but the movement will be long-lasting.
Besides Protesting, Here Are Five Ways to Actively Support the Black Lives Matter Movement in Boston: Advocate for legislative bills, support Black-owned businesses, and three other efforts you can make from home.
Black Lives Matter Boston centers work against racist policing and police violence, abolishing mass incarceration, economic disparities and factors that allow the school to prison pipeline to exist. BLM – Boston’s mission is to organize and build Black power in Boston and across the country. Some examples of this is to galvanize our communities to end state-sanctioned violence against Black people. To support the development of new Black leaders, as well as create a network where Black people feel empowered to determine our destinies in our communities.
Tired of cooking during the pandemic? Here are 50+ Boston Area Black-owned Restaurants you can support.
How to support racial justice in Massachusetts: A running list of resources in Massachusetts to turn action into real change.
A list of rallies against racism, police brutality in MA. Current list is for events June 5 – 7. It will be continuously updated as information becomes available.
Resources for Anti-Racist Action June 2020
Legal Service Providers
ArtForum’s Guide for Action Steps Against Police Brutality
Black Lives Matter
American Civil Liberties Union
Equal Justice Initiative
The Freedom Fund
Know Your Rights Camp Legal Defense Initiative
National Bail Fund Network
The Bail Project
Read, Watch, Learn, and Follow
The Space/Race Reading List – This reading list was collectively produced by a group of architectural historians, art historians, architects, and urbanists in reaction to the August 2017 events in Charlottesville. They assembled a series of readings on how race and racism are constructed with spatial means, and on how in turn space can be shaped by racism. The list is meant primarily as a teaching resource.
A Black Lives Matter Co-Founder Explains Why This Time is Different – In 2013, the community organizers Opal Tometi, Patrisse Cullors, and Alicia Garza started the Black Lives Matter movement. What began as a hashtag in response to Trayvon Martin’s death became a nationwide phenomenon, with protests in response to the killings of African-Americans and chapters across the country. Now, after the death of George Floyd, at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, and a week of nationwide protests to an extent unseen in a half century, Black Lives Matter is once again the biggest story in the country. Isaac Chotiner interviews Tometi for The New Yorker.
Ally Resources for Supporters of Black Lives Matter – If you aren’t able to be out protesting, there are still tons of ways you can support the current movement for racial justice at home. Here is a list of resources, organizations to donate to, petitions to sign, and a number of other actions you can take from home to help support Black Lives Matter as an ally.
How to Make this Moment the Turning Point for Real Change by Barack Obama – “So the bottom line is this: if we want to bring about real change, then the choice isn’t between protest and politics. We have to do both. We have to mobilize to raise awareness, and we have to organize and cast our ballots to make sure that we elect candidates who will act on reform.”
From the National Museum of African American History and Culture – Being Antiracist: To create an equal society, we must commit to making unbiased choices and being antiracist in all aspects of our lives. “Being antiracist is fighting against racism. Racism takes several forms and works most often in tandem with at least one other form to reinforce racist ideas, behavior, and policy.”
Ways You Can Help – When You’re Done: Educate Yourself. This Doesn’t Go Away Once The Topic Isn’t, “Trending.”
Sign a Petition