A Message on #BlackLivesMatter
I’m filled with anger and sadness at the recent events in Minnesota and across the country.
The murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police officers is a horrific tragedy that demands justice. Black lives matter — and this sort of tragedy plays out far too often in our nation and must end.
Now, people across the country are taking part in vigils and demonstrations against systemic racism and police brutality. And, sadly, many people exercising their First Amendment right to protest, as well as on-duty journalists, have been indiscriminately targeted by further police violence.
Democracy is our common cause. And, we can’t have a true democracy when Black and Brown people are denied their rights to justice — or victimized by abuse, racial profiling, and police brutality. So right now, I’m urging Common Cause members to join me in personally supporting Black-led organizing to address the deep inequities in our society — in our justice system, our healthcare system, and our democracy.
Each of us is being impacted in different ways by what’s happening right now — not all of us equally. But all of us must stand united in a call for justice — the justice that is needed if we are to have an inclusive and equitable democracy.
One way to show that solidarity right now (and going forward) is by financially supporting grassroots organizing against police brutality and for racial justice — and providing support to demonstrators, journalists, and the Minneapolis communities.
So, if you are able to right now, please make a contribution to a community bail fund near you, or one of the local groups organizing for justice in Minnesota linked on this page.
Common Cause is particularly concerned with the efforts by President Trump to compound this tragic situation by fanning the flames, inciting violence against protestors, and calling for police escalation.
The right to protest and participate in civil disobedience is fundamental to a democracy — as is freedom of the press. We must reject attempts to demonize or scapegoat those who are demonstrating for justice. And, we must protect the press from attacks that would undermine their ability to carry out their duties.
George Floyd and his family deserve justice. George Floyd, like Dreasjon Reed, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Aubrey, and other Black people and people of color killed by police and vigilantes this year, should be alive.
As an organization that works to realize the promise of democracy, we must acknowledge racism that has been an integral part of this nation’s past and present — and fight systemic racism wherever we find it, whether it be in our streets, at the ballot box, or in our justice system.
Thank you for all you do, and please stay safe,
Karen Hobert Flynn, President