Racism exists in this country, and our friends of color have been carrying the weight of it for generations. Here at Furtive Grunion Books we stand behind the protesters who are fighting for equality.
The news might make you feel different things right now.
You might feel:
All of these feelings are OK.
You might be overhearing bits of conversations and not know what exactly is going on. It is OK to ask grownups to explain things to you, and if you still don’t understand you can ask them again (or someone else) until you get an answer that makes sense to you.
Here is my simple explanation:
There is a long history of police brutality against African-American people that has gone unpunished, and last week another unarmed man was killed by the police.
On top of that, COVID is affecting African-American communities at a greater rate:
- African-American people are more likely to getting sick and die from COVID.
- African-Americans are more likely to have jobs that can’t be done from home.
- African-Americans are more likely to have jobs considered “essential” and have to work during COVID, and often will be paid less than their white coworkers for these jobs.
Every day African-Americans are treated differently and less than other people and no one should be OK with that. To see protesters take to the streets gives us hope that things might change.
If you are feeling sad or scared here are some bright spots to think about:
- Many police officers are joining the protesters, hugging protesters, and kneeling with protesters.
- Ella Jones was elected as the first African-American (and first female) mayor of Ferguson, Missouri last night. Ferguson is an important city in the Black Lives Matter movement due to a horrible tragedy that occured in 2014 when police killed a man named Michael Brown.
- Racism is finally getting taken seriously. The City of Cleveland, Ohio is voting to declare racism a public health crisis.
And finally, since I am a cat who likes books, here are some good books you might read right now:
Let’s Talk About Race by Julius Lester, illustrated by Karen Barbour. This book is geared towards kittens in Kindergarten-2nd Grade.
This Book Is Anti-Racist: 20 Lessons on How to Wake Up, Take Action, and Do The Work by Tiffany Jewell, illustrated by Aurelia Durand
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. This is a great book for teenaged cats.
From #blacklivesmatter to Black Liberation by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor