The beauty of the world lies in the diversity of its people, however prejudice policing is destroying communities and exacerbating racial division in America. As protests continue across the United States, calling for an end to police brutality and justice for the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Elijah McClain, Sandra Bland, Tamir Rice, Trayvon Martin, and countless others, there are many ways you can take action in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and the Black community.
Every successful social movement has used disruption as a strategy to fight social change. The Black Lives Matter Movement calls on people from all over the world to unite, partake in protests and rallies, donate to relevant causes and educate on racial inequalities. There’s still a lot of work to be done in the fight against systemic racism and police brutality against Black Americans and everyone has a role to play. It starts with celebrating diversity and inclusion, and using your platform to foster racial equality to create positive change.
There is no place in our society for violence, discrimination or injustice and we must continue to demand a just society. There’s a moment when you have to choose whether be silent or stand up. If you are silent or neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.
Whether it’s by donating money, attending protests, educating yourself or amplifying the voices of black people, here are 5 ways you can continue to support the global struggle against racism.
Attend A Peaceful Protest
Throughout history, public protests have been crucial to the visibility and success of civil rights campaigns – from women winning the vote to LGBTQ+ rights. Join a peaceful protest with social distancing and mask-wearing encouraged.
Rock the Vote
Wherever you are, you can support political movements and parties that are campaigning against racism. In the USA, Black Lives Matter is running a ‘register to vote’ campaign ahead of the 2020 presidential election. Make sure that you vote for those who will put racial justice in the forefront of their campaigns. 2020 is a presidential election year, but there are also local elections and primaries happening all over the United States. You can use the list of state primary elections to find out when you can get out and vote this year.
Amplify Black Voices
Changing the dominant narrative means amplifying the voices of Black people and Black history. From the original #BlackLivesMatter hashtag to the social media blackout of June 2, 2020, online campaigns have been one of the most effective ways for people to show support and raise awareness of the anti-racist movement.
Lasting change won’t happen without actively deconstructing our beliefs about race. Take this time of continued self-isolation to educate on what it means to be anti-racist. Whether you’re just learning about racism in America or are in the process of knowing more, support a Black-owned bookstore and checkout books about anti-racism like Ta-Nehisi Coates memoir Between the World and Me and Ibram X. Kendi’s bestseller How to Be an Antiracist.
Support Black Businesses & Creators
A way to directly protest economic racism is to support black-owned businesses, read publications that amplify Black voices and follow Black content creators. Diversify your Instagram and Twitter feeds and follow Black influencers, creatives and activists— then use your platform to lift up the Black community.
By Kinya Claiborne, STYLE & SOCIETY
Cover Photo: Kinya Claiborne
Photo Credit: Craig Blanks Photography
Video: Beauty and the Mess Podcast