Dear Friends of Goethe School members and supporters:
The horrific murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police has called new attention to the scourge of police brutality and racism in all forms. Mr. Floyd’s death wasn’t an aberration -- it was the latest example of the institutional racism that plagues our criminal justice system. We must say their names:Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, andLaquan McDonald, among countless others. For many Americans, these murders have uncovered a pattern of racism and police brutality; for Black Americans, these injustices are the reality of daily life.
As parents, teachers, and neighbors in the Logan Square community, Friends of Goethe School denounces police brutality and racism in all forms; demands immediate steps to ensure racial justice at all levels of government, including criminal justice and public education; and calls for racism and white supremacy in public life to be treated as a public health emergency.
But there is also much work to be done among individuals and families. We urge our fellow neighbors and parents to educate themselves (ourselves) on the history of racism and white supremacy in America; on how to identify their (our) own implicit or unconscious bias; and how they (we) benefit from white privilege. White neighbors and parents have a special responsibility to teach their (our) children about these histories and biases, and play an active role in dismantling white supremacy in their (our) communities.
As an organization committed to the benefit of public education, we must increase our support for anti-racism efforts in our local public schools to ensure that these courageous conversations are an integral part of the curriculum and school culture. We must critically examine the ways that our own volunteer and fundraising activities contribute to the racial and socioeconomic disparities that plague public education.
Now more than ever, we must speak with one voice against racism and white supremacy:
Black Lives Matter.
Black Bodies Matter.
Black Children Matter.
Black Futures Matter.
With love and gratitude,
Friends of Goethe School