Every compassionate person in this country knows that it’s time now for every one of us to do something. There are lots of places to plug in. No need to go to the streets. You can donate funds. Send poems. Write essays. Letters to editors. Prayer circles. Our time of not acting is over. Our country is self-imploding. This democracy is in our hands. Here are some ideas for you:
Women’s history journaling project, https://www.womenshistory.org/journal-project
- Donate to Black Lives Matter: You can find the main donation page here.
- Get involved with your local BLM chapter: The full list is here.
- Or start your own: More info here.
- Donate to abail fund: Some Twitter users are crowd-sourcing lists of local organizations that help bail out protesters who get arrested. Thread here.
- Or another bail fund: This crowd-sourced Google Docof bail fundskeeps getting bigger.
- Support the National Police Accountability Project: This group, a project of the National Lawyers Guild, helps people find legal counsel. More info here.
- Support Campaign Zero, a police reform group that has been working on policy solutions “informed by data and human rights principles. More info here.
- Sign a petition: Civil rights group Color of Changelaunched a petition asking that all the officers involved in Floyd’s death are brought to justice. Find it here.
- Or another petition: The “Justice for George Floyd” petition on Change.org already has 8.5 million supporters. That sends a big message. Find it here.
In addition to using your voice and dollars to propagate the change, you can, especially as a non-person of color, make a conscious and daily effort to educate yourself on the experience of black Americans and the history of slavery and racism in the United States. Some great books to start with are The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson, and The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin (a more extensive anti-racist reading list can be found here). Some good podcasts to check out are 1919 by the NYTimes and Code Switch by NPR. Lastly, films and documentaries such as 13th and When They See Us on Netflix, as well as The Hate U Give on Hulu are also great options.
Remember to vote! Voting on the local, state, and federal levels is a way to communicate your values and help implement change in an official capacity. President Obama released a statement yesterday morning urging protestors to remember the value of representation in the democratic system saying, “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.” Stay informed on candidates and measures and use your vote to choose who and what to support.
Finally, we encourage you to not be silent on issues of race. Change can only occur when we begin to discuss the root of issues and the different ways in which they manifest in our societies. Have meaningful conversations about what is happening in the US and truly listen when black Americans are sharing their experiences and their needs. Although this is far from a comprehensive list of all the ways to get involved in the fight for racial equality, we hope this list is helpful for those looking for a starting point.
San Diego actions:
- Contact your city council member to demand they support a ballot initiative to create an Independent Police Commission in San Diego. https://mailchi.mp/sandiegansforjustice/cityhall
- Donate to the DeDe McClure Community Bail Fund to support keeping local activists out of jail, increasingly dangerous during Covid.
- Donate to Black Womxn Deserve, a local mutual aid fund
To learn more and oppose the budget proposed by our mayor, putting 37% of the Central Fund to policing at the expense of funding mental health, tenant relief, and other institutions that actually create safe communities.