Given that most of our followers are guests from around the world, we wanted to share some resources for all of you to better understand what is currently going on in the United States and how you can get involved, even from afar.
On May 25th, George Floyd, a father, hip-hop artist, restaurant worker and Black man, died after a white police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes, ignoring his pleas for help. Three other policemen stood by without helping. The officers have all been charged with crimes, but the aftermath has lead to over a week straight of protests, demonstrations and an outpouring of support from around the world. We are hoping this is a turning point in the course of American history, but the United States has a deep history of systemic racism that needs to be addressed before any healing can begin. There is a lot of work to do, and we at The Local are committed to doing the hard work to listen, learn and change the systems in our country to re-affirm that Black Lives Matter.
While you may not live in the US, it’s still important that you understand the current events and hopefully can lend your voice of support. Here’s where to start:
Educate yourselves: Take some time to understand the current situation as well as America’s history of slavery and systemic racism.
(Relatively) unbiased local media sources:
Books and articles about America’s history:
A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn (a deep look at some historical events in the United States told from different perspectives)
The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein (an explanation about how racial segregation became codified into US law)
The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander (a look at how the US criminal justice situation unfairly targets Black Americans)
How to be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi (an essential book for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step of contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society)
This Anti-racism for Beginners guide has a comprehensive list of resources to help you start understanding and tackling these issues.
Attend local peaceful protests: Global citizens have taken to the streets around the world to show their support for these issues. Find you local Black Lives Matter chapter for more information about rallies in your area.
Sign Petitions: Add your name to petitions demanding justice for George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor.
Change.org is a great resource to look for petitions about various current events.
Buy Black: Support Black business, restaurants, artists, writers and makers in your own community and when you travel to the US. Some websites to help you include WeBuyBlack, The Black Wallet, and Official Black Wall Street. Here is a spreadsheet of Black-owned restaurants in NYC.
Donate: If you can, donate to causes that are trying to affect real change. Some of our favorites include:
Black Lives Matter – Their purpose is to eradicate white supremacy, combat violence inflicted on Black communities, and affirm the lives of Black people.
Campaign Zero – They are supporting a platform of research0based policy solutions to put an end to police brutality in America.
ACLU – The American Civil Liberties Union works to protect the freedoms guaranteed to all Americans under the Constitution.
Vote.org – They work to protect everyone’s right to vote and increase voter turnout.