Commentary

OutFront Minnesota speaks out in support of Michael Brown

The killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. demands that we speak out about this tragic injustice.

Why OutFront Minnesota? As the state’s leading lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) advocacy organization, we cannot stand by and remain silent.

nicque“We cannot stand by because the circumstances of Michael Brown’s death are far too common. As a queer woman of color in this work for lived equality, I know that the lives of people of color are constantly in danger in a society that doesn’t see our humanity. Every time my loved ones leave home, I fear for their safety. Will the officers that pass by frequently on patrol see my loved ones and friends as people or threats? The tension behind this question is one so many of us feel, and it robs us of our ability to live freely.

“We cannot stand by because racist systems control our society and police brutality is real. Members of our beloved community have been attacked in their homes. Every 28 hours an African American man is killed by members of law enforcement. We are not shown that our lives are valuable and worthy of protection, often by those who have sworn a duty to protect and serve.” – Nicque Mabrey

monica“We cannot stand by because we are at a breaking point and our silence is killing us. As a white lesbian, I have felt paralyzed at times (due to recent events) because the problem feels so insurmountable. I’ve also felt an urgency to do something right this minute to oppose racism because I don’t want the world we live in to be like this. And, as a white person, I know I have an obligation to be part of countering persistent and structural racism that does so much harm to our society.” – Monica Meyer

We cannot stand by because the mission of OutFront Minnesota is to create a state where we are all free to be who we are, love who we love, and live without fear of violence, harassment or discrimination. By speaking out in support of Michael Brown’s life, we call upon white people to act as allies across the state to lift up real dialogue on structural racism, the damage of white privilege and affirm the basic right of all people to live safely. We must start here. Our lives depend on it.

 
August 26, 2014
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