“White nationalism anywhere is a threat to all of us everywhere.”
— Ginna Green
We can’t fight what we don’t understand. In the wake of a white nationalist attack targeting the Black community in Buffalo, we gathered last week to be in community, honor the victims, and learn about what’s happening in this country — and how we can respond in solidarity.
On the call, we discussed the dangerous ideology that motivated the shooting — the same set of conspiracy theories and lies that connect it to other horrifying acts of violence in Pittsburgh, El Paso, Christchurch, and Poway.
White supremacy is the greatest threat to the dream of a democratic America where every single person can be safe and thrive. We must respond to this threat with the full moral courage and political strength this moment requires.
Here are four key reflections from last week’s national community call:
“Our tradition teaches us that each life is a whole world… Pearl Young… Andre Mackniel… Roberta Drury… Heyward Patterson… Ruth Whitfield… Celestine Chaney… Aaron Salter… Geraldine Talley… Margus Morrison… Katherine Massey… We remember them, each an entire lost world. We remember them in resistance to an act of violence that seeks to dehumanize and destroy, to limit and exclude. All of our worlds are diminished by the taking of their worlds.”
“White nationalism anywhere is a threat to all of us everywhere. We remember the shooting at the Tree of Life and the organizers and people on the ground who worked so deeply and so closely with Black, brown, and Muslim allies in Pittsburgh. We were able to come together to honor the lives of those who were lost. We are in this fight together.”
“Across the country we're seeing an authoritarian coalition that's continuing to seize and to consolidate power… They're rolling back voting rights, rolling back abortion rights, attacking Black and brown and LGBTQ folks, and they're spreading antisemitism.
“White supremacy is going to keep knocking on our door until we dismantle it completely. And so Jews are at a turning point. More and more of us are coming to understand that the compromise in America that worked for some of us was not actually stable ground for Jewish well-being. That our future depends on building a multiracial democracy in the United States. And we don't know what that's going to look like, because we've never had one.”
Part of fighting for multiracial democracy is investing in the safety and well-being of the communities most impacted by the harm of white supremacy.
The horrific, racist shooting in Buffalo comes alongside so many other injustices disproportionately impacting Black communities, like the fight for abortion rights and reproductive freedom, an unprecedented nationwide formula shortage, and the once-unfathomable milestone of one million Covid deaths.
We’re encouraging direct fundraising for five organizations in Buffalo that are working daily to address systemic white supremacy and resource their community. Right now, they’re directly responding to the closure of the Tops supermarket after the shooting by providing important resources like food, diapers, and healing spaces.
Donate now to directly support community organizations in Buffalo — then make sure to share the list with your friends, neighbors, and community groups and encourage them to donate too.
Keeping Buffalo in our hearts,
The Bend the Arc team