Racial Justice Working Group participants are kept up-to-date on programs, projects and activities to assist in the fight against institutionalized racism and white supremacy and in creating awareness about the impact of whiteness on people of color. We have a wide variety of projects, programs and activities.
Current projects/activities (updated 10/9/17):
- New Item: Real Rent calls on people who live and work in Seattle to make rent payments to the Duwamish Tribe. Though the city named for the Duwamish leader Chief Seattle thrives, the Tribe has yet to be justly compensated for their land, resources, and livelihood. You can stand in solidarity with First Peoples of this land by paying Real Rent. All funds go directly to Duwamish Tribal Services (DTS) to support the revival of Duwamish culture and the vitality of the Duwamish Tribe. Join this grassroots movement at: http://www.realrentduwamish.org/
- New Item: “I’m Drowning in Whiteness” — “Every time you go through something, and it’s easy for you, look around and say, “Who is it not easy for? And what can I do to dismantle that system?” But in order to do that, you have to be willing to look at it and see it as a part of the system of whiteness because that’s what it is.” – Ijeoma Oluo http://kuow.org/post/ijeoma-oluo-i-am-drowning-whiteness
- New Item: “Witness to Wartime” — The Washington State History Museum is honored to open an exhibition of artworks by Takuichi Fujii. Incarcerated during World War II as a result of Executive Order 9066, his work sheds light on difficult events that most Americans did not experience, the lessons of which remain highly relevant today. https://thesubtimes.com/2017/08/31/resilience-and-incarceration-witness-to-wartime-opens-at-wshm-sept-16/
- Informal showing of the motion picture “I Am Not Your Negro” about James Baldwin with a discussion after ~ We’ll arrange a showing as soon as we have a core group of 6-8. Let Fred know if you are interested.
- Support a boycott of all things NFL until “the Colin Kaepernick issue” is resolved ~ Each do what we can. Here’s a good background article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/the-making-of-colin-kaepernick/2017/09/07/d4d58e20-9320-11e7-8754-d478688d23b4_story.html?utm_term=.bf07ffa81b16&wpisrc=nl_mustreads&wpmm=1
- Encourage the WSUU Worship Council to have people of color in the pulpit on at least a semi-regular basis ~ Make individual contacts with the Worship Council.
- Book discussion of “Witnessing Whiteness“ ~ We’ll start as soon as we have a core group of 5-6. Let Fred know if you’re interested. Here’s a link to some reviews: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2589697-witnessing-whiteness.
- Gathering signatures for the “De-Escalate Washington” petition drive (I-940). Fred and Robert Pacht will be in the Social Hall after the Sunday service on October 15 if you want to sign. If you would like to gather signatures yourself, please contact Fred. Here’s a link to the Web site for more background: http://www.deescalatewa.org/
- Sunday morning racial justice discussion group ~ Proposed: Once a month, we’ll meet from 9:00 – 10:00 a.m. to discuss a significant, racial justice-related article or web-based piece ~ An interesting first article might be “The Black Hole in the White UU Psyche” by Mark Morrison-Read in the Fall 2017 issue of UU World. Let Fred know if you are interested.
- “If I Had a Hammer—Understanding Systemic Racism” Understanding the elements and configurations of structural racism in our society is a key to mitigating the effects on marginalized populations we serve. This class will use real-world examples and personal stories to help participants understand the history, and implications of racism in the structures that govern access to power in our society. Leader: Cecelia Hayes, WSUU Member. Sunday, October 15, 1:00 -3:00 p.m., Fireside Room, WSUU. Sign up on the WSUU Web site: go to tab “News and Events,” click on “Events” and scroll down to the link for “If I Had A Hammer…”
- African-American Writers Alliance ~ Formed in 1991, the African-American Writers Alliance sponsors a monthly reading of poetry, prose and other writing by local authors. Second Monday every month at Third Place Books/Seward Park, 5041 Wilson Ave S., Seattle.
Contact Fred Matthews: 206.935.3038 or firstname.lastname@example.org