Cynthia Townsend

It’s a blessing for me to be able to fight racism with Westside, the community that I love. I am learning so much. 1 in 3 Black children in our country grow up in poverty. Babies without enough to eat. Children who drop out of high school to support their families. In our country the wealthiest nation in the world.

For the sake of my soul, I have to do everything that I can to fight racism. I can not be a member of a church that won’t support me in that & I’m not sure that Westside will be such a place, if we don’t adopt the 8th Principle at our Annual Meeting.

The words in the 8th Principle are crucial & should not be changed. They have been carefully chosen by Black & White UU leaders after decades of thought & consideration. We Unitarians are famous for spending years debating words & punctuation. Enough. Antiracism work cannot wait. Westside needs to show that we are opposed to all forms of racism, by passing the 8th Principle as proposed, at this year’s Annual Meeting, not a diluted version of it.

1. The 8th Principle specifically names “racism” because we live in a segregated country & most White people don’t know People of Color or see their
suffering. By including the word “racism” the 8th Principle will remind us of the lives it is destroying & remind us to not get distracted by other
issues & forget about racism, like White UU’s did in past decades.
2. The 8th Principle includes the word institutions, which will remind us that our main fight is against racist policies, practices & laws, not individual
3. The word “accountably” is used in the 8th Principle so we don’t forget to consistently seek the wisdom & feedback of the oppressed about their
oppression, including asking them & ourselves if what we are doing is making the lives of People of Color better, in a meaningful way.
4. And, when WSUU adopts the 8th Principle, Westside activists will have much more time to spend on work that directly helps People of Color.

Adopting the 8th Principle will not finish our work, instead it will be a private & public declaration of our ongoing journey of love.
In my heart I know that the loving thing for us to do is to adopt the 8th Principle in a few months, at our Annual Meeting.
I want Westside to be on the right side of history!

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