Highlights from Day 2 of Pursuing Justice 2020 Online

Highlights from Day 2 of Pursuing Justice 2020 Online

May 05, 2020


After two days of Pursuing Justice 2020 Online, I have to tell you: I am so in love with this community.

Alongside 1,300 Jews and allies, I was guided in ritual by our movement’s healers, learned from experts and dedicated practitioners, and was moved by allies and champions showing up with us.

What I most took away from these two days is the clarity that what we are fighting for is much bigger than any one of us. The stakes are high, but we aren’t backing down. We are a people who hold fast to the tree of life. We are a people rooted in justice. And in this moment, we are choosing to rise up as one, in solidarity.

I hope you are a part of our community because you also believe that we — as Jews and allies — have something important and special to contribute to this moment as we bend the moral arc of the universe toward justice. Together.

As one of our closing keynote speakers Alicia Garza said, “Let our movement be like the crush you cannot live without. Let our movement be like the anticipation of your lover’s phone call.

We gathered for Pursuing Justice 2020 Online to grow our relationships and learn together how to fight for a thriving multiracial democracy, even in, especially in, the midst of this pandemic. For those who joined us, thank you for strengthening this movement. For those who cheered along from afar, we felt your support. You have a community with which to meet this moment together, shoulder to shoulder.

With deep gratitude,

Stosh Cotler, CEO



Look how beautifully it turned out! This digital mural was created in an interactive open space facilitated by artist Jessica Valoris. In this session, participants were encouraged to contribute their dreams, ideas, doodles, quotes, and inspirations to our interactive digital collage that evolved throughout the day.


This downloadable poster, designed by Sam Fine & Tom Haviv, reminds us that we are resilient, connected to our ancestors and future generations, deeply rooted in our values, and committed to building a country where we are all safe and free. We hope you’ll download and print it so you can proudly display it in your space!


“This is a moment of tremendous potential. In large part because we are seeing how quickly societies can change in the face of threat. We are seeing consumer capitalism transform virtually overnight. We are seeing decisions being made to put human health before profit. It's going to be a fight and an ongoing fight. But now that we’ve seen societies change so quickly, we can imagine change in other ways.”

— Naomi Klein, Closing Plenary

“There is no freedom without political equality. Democracy is both the pursuit and presence of political equality — a reflection of the promised land we haven't yet seen.”

— Ginna Green, America 2070: Building the Democracy of Our Dreams

“The tenet of showing up, with, and for our neighbors has been our driving force. It sounds simple but it isn’t.”

— Jonathan Mayo, Pittsburgh Loves All Our Neighbors: How We Responded to Tragedy and Changed the Narrative

“Ableism conspires with racism and white supremacy. With classism and capitalism and queer- and transphobia and ageism and misogyny and fatphobia. Ableism makes certain lives seem less valuable and less worthy of protection.”

— Rabbi Julia Watts Belser, Disability and Jewish Social Justice

“We do ourselves a disservice by pretending that 3,000 Americans are not dying every day by COVID and we do humanity a disservice by not naming them, not talking about the sick among us, by pretending this is a private matter, when this is a global struggle around whether we are going to be the last-surviving humans or not.”

— Eric Ward, Closing Plenary



Watch all the videos from day 2







Three ways to take action: 

❤️ Give: If you are in a position to give at this time, please consider making a donation to power Bend the Arc: Jewish Action through this moment.
Advocate: Send a message to your Members of Congress to demand a moral COVID relief package that meets the scale of this crisis.
📣 Get organized: Join a Bend the Arc group in your city, and if there isn’t one already, our team will walk you through starting your own — just reply to this email!

Thank you so much to everyone who joined Pursuing Justice 2020 Online and made it such a powerful experience.