June 15th 2020
Late afternoon today several hundred gathered at the corner of East Washington and 4th Street in a call to allies in the movement for Black Lives.
Speakers included: Dr. Damita Brown of Dane County Time Bank, Justice Castaneda of Commonwealth Development, and County Superintendent Heidi Wegleitner who talked about why the police are a bad investment. All of the speakers spoke of the racial disparities in the city of Madison and Dane county; disparities greater than some of the poorest states in the country. In addition, they called for action, not committees to investigate and put together reports and commissions—all of which has been done over and over again—but a real call for direct, immediate real action:
- Move immediately to start defunding the police
- Community control of the police
- Get the police out of schools now
- Invest in Black people and communities
- Free them all
- Dismantle Capitalism
Furthermore, this rally was a call to primarily white allies to stand up, come out and be a voice in this fight. The need for allies, co-conspirators and accomplices is greater than ever as momentum for real change is once again possible. This is not the time for arm-chair allies!
Here is the statement from the event Facebook page:
“Black leaders from all over the city, the country and even the world have been spending countless hours to let the world know that they refuse to go unheard any longer, to make sure we know not only that Black Lives Matter but that NOW is the time for resources and power to be shifted swiftly away from oppressive institutions and into the communities most impacted by racism, capitalism, and police violence. We cannot let all of the burden of organizing and acting fall on those communities. As allies in the Movement for Black Lives, it is beyond time for us to do our part. It is our turn to stand up, speak up, and put our bodies and resources into the movement.
When we follow the lead of Black leaders, the whole world benefits. As Otis Madison once said, "Racism is to control the behavior of white people." Let that sink in. If it weren't for racism, people of all colors would have long ago banded together and risen up against the elites who are making all of our lives more difficult. Many accomplished Black scholars including Robin DG Kelley and Cedric Robinson have written about the crucial psychological role of race in covering for the abuses of capitalism. Imagine all that we could accomplish if the 99% could finally unite!”
This event has the following sponsors: