June 6, 2020
To our Inn Dwelling community,
As I am sure is true for all of us, the events of the past two weeks have upset me greatly and been constantly on my mind. The unjust and deliberate death of George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of the police, played out so vividly for all to see, reminds us of the racial injustice so prevalent in our country. In a similar manner, the scenes of individuals turning what could and should have been lawful, peaceful protests into violent riots and looting are horrifying and equally upsetting. I have been wrestling with the juxtaposition of these two events.
Valid protesting of an unjust death should not turn into violence, but rather should strengthen our resolve to join together to solve the most pressing challenges facing our society. The violence done to George Floyd truly calls for protests to call for equality but it should not be the trigger or excuse for violence in our streets. Such activity just raises more barriers to reaching solutions for the cause of justice among all Americans. Our country is already on edge due to the coronavirus and the economic crisis it engendered. We are living in a time of extreme political divisiveness where we struggle to come together and find common ground. People from all walks of life are feeling uneasy, uncertain, frightened and angry.
I believe that it is our collective duty to challenge our biases, try to understand the experiences of others, be open to accepting each other’s differences and acknowledge that issues of race and bigotry are still very real in today’s society. Inn Dwelling is committed to making our city, our state and our country a more just, fair, equitable and accepting place to live. We are committed to working with young people and breaking the cycle and stigma of poverty, one of the causes of inequality, through education.
There is a quote attributed to Senator Bobby Kennedy in the speech he gave when he informed the crowd of the assassination of Martin Luther King. This following quote captures the essence of what I think we all need to consider: “We can move in that direction as a country, in great polarization – black people amongst black, white people amongst white, filled with hatred toward one another. Or we can make an effort, as Martin Luther King did, to understand and to comprehend, and to replace that violence, that stain of bloodshed that has spread across our land, with an effort to understand with compassion and love.”
Let’s all lead with understanding, compassion and love in our relationships with each other and in our communities.
President, Inn Dwelling