It made me sad to read one blogger’s commentary on this past Thursday’s Jena protests, wondering where all of the white folks were. I was unable to go because of work and financial constraints, but I try to tell myself I would have been there if I could. I am not sure I can call myself a white anti-racist if I’m not willing to stand with my brothers and sisters of color when they are being treated wrongly. Sure, I wore my t-shirt on Thursday, and printed a few pages of flyers, but because I was at a work conference, I was timid and reluctant to hand out even the few flyers I printed.
What is it going to take before I’m willing to give more than lip service to all of this? What will it take before I’m willing to stand with people of color to fight this insiduous evil?
anyway, here’s the update letter I received yesterday. (below the fold) If you want to receive Jena 6 updates, visit www.colorofchange.org for subscription information.
Dear Lorraine,Thursday was a powerful day. From the thousands of people who packed the streets of Jena, to the thousands who took action all over the country, you stepped up as a community to show your support for the Jena 6 and their families. When we looked at the numbers at the end of the day, we were awed by your commitment. More than 1,250 of you said you were going to Jena. Even more inspiring was that you said you’d bring nearly 10,000 people with you, in cars, rented vans, and hired buses! 6,500 of you signed up to pass out flyers in your local communities; 200 of you held vigils and rallies; and you made 6,200 phone calls to Louisiana officials.
We started ColorOfChange.org after Hurricane Katrina to make sure the next time disaster struck our community, there would be an organized, strategic and loud response from Black America and our allies. Yesterday, you were organized, you were strategic, you were loud, and you made it clear that the disaster of Jim Crow justice occurring in Jena will not be allowed to stand.
Mychal’s bond hearing yesterday was a bitter disappointment. Judge Mauffray declined to release him, or to set any conditions for his release. It’s clear that the fight for justice is far from over, and that it will take more from each of us to ensure freedom for these 6 young men. Thankfully, our movement is now more than 350,000 people strong; and we know that our collective effort in the next weeks and months can make a major difference in how things unfold for these young men. We hope you are in it for the long haul and will continue to push forward and fight on behalf of our young men. We will continue to give you updates and meaningful ways to act on behalf of the Jena 6.
It continues to be our privilege to be part of such a strong and powerful community. Together, we will make a difference for these young men, and for justice in our world.
Thank You and Peace,
— James, Van, Gabriel, Clarissa, Mervyn, and the rest of the ColorOfChange.org team
September 22th, 2007
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