It is likely a massive understatement to say that this year has not gone as we’ve expected. Every morning we wake up, and it seems like the next horseman of the apocalypse has arrived. We are living through historical moments simultaneously, and in these rapidly changing and significant times, it is important to harness the momentum.
The Black Lives Matter movement has pronounced itself as something the world cannot ignore after the most recent last straw, the death of George Floyd, occurred in Minneapolis. This set off a chain of events that have called for action against police brutality and systemic racism, including in the Brentwood community.
On the 11th of June, students and staff gathered over Zoom to have a discussion about how race has played a role in their lives. We first defined some terms relevant to the discussion, and then asked the participants some questions to ignite discussion. The questions were:
- What is the racial atmosphere of Brentwood?
- What was your consciousness of race growing up?
- What is going on in the countries you live in?
- What are the next steps to prevent this trend from fizzling out?
- What are the next steps at Brentwood?
Afterwards, a few individuals stepped up to tell their stories regarding the protests, how they grew up, and how this movement affects them. Finally, we shared some good sources that could help people further educate themselves on this topic.
This discussion was incredibly insightful, and allowed me to listen to different perspectives I’d never heard before. It was the start to, hopefully, a routine of having uncomfortable, but very important, discussions about racial injustice, not just at Brentwood, but in all the communities each of us touch.
Janessa P, Mackenzie ‘20