Statement on the Killing of George Floyd

Quakers put our beliefs into action through our testimonies:

The Peace Testimony is our witness to the world of a transformed life centered in Love. . . This love requires compassion, but living our lives centered in this love also requires constructive action that seeks an end to poverty, violence, and suffering.

Faith and Practice, Northern Yearly Meeting Religious Society of Friends, 2017, p. 36.

Madison Quakers recognize that to remain silent and inactive in the face of systemic violence against Black people is to be complicit in that violence. We decry the killing of George Floyd, one in a long line of tragic deaths of people of color at the hands of police. We unequivocally stand against racist state violence and add our voices to those who are calling for an end to violent police action and institutionalized racism. In doing so we acknowledge the pain that Black sisters and brothers continue to experience.

We also recognize that the problem is much bigger than the injustice of the justice system. The assumptions of White superiority that run throughout our society and that are at the root of racism are deeply programmed into the subconscious and not easily unlearned. And yet we must do so if we are to transform a social system which still treats White people more favorably, and penalizes Black people more harshly.

As a predominantly White faith community, Madison Quakers also recognize that these statements are not enough. It is necessary for our society to examine its beliefs and practices and to identify personal and institutional racism. Therefore, Madison Quakers commit to better educate ourselves on racism and to change our behaviors, both as individuals and as a community to be actively anti-racist. And we commit ourselves to be respectful allies to those organizations led by people of color who are advocating for police accountability and justice in our community.

 Being an anti-racist requires persistent self-awareness, constant self-criticism and regular self-examination.
– How To Be An Anti-Racist, Ibram X. Kendi

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