Ways To Take Action Against Police Brutality & Show Up For Racial Justice
All of us here at The Prattler are distraught and outraged by the recent events of police brutality and racial violence around the country, as well as the unlawful deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery and countless others. In Pratt Institute’s statement on the matter, President Bronet reconfirms our belief that it is “further heartbreaking that this is happening at a time when people are already isolated, disheartened, struggling economically, and frightened about the future.” While President Bronet’s words on the current injustices facing our nation and community ring true, we as a newspaper believe there is so much more we must do. As a publication, it is our responsibility to use our platform to inform the student body and elevate marginalized voices, as well as speak out about injustices and systemic oppression at large. As a community—at Pratt and beyond—it is our responsibility to do our part. We’ve compiled an ongoing list of local and national organizations to donate to, resources to educate ourselves with and other ways to continue the fight towards ending police violence and racial discrimination. More will be added. National & Minneapolis Resources The GoFundMe campaign organized by George Floyd’s family—who was killed by police last month in Minneapolis—helps to directly cover funeral/burial costs and legal fees. A separate campaign has also been started for Floyd’s six-year-old daughter to provide financial care moving forward. Justice has also not yet been served for Breonna Taylor, the young woman who was shot and killed in her home by police on March 13. A GoFundMe set up by Breonna’s sister, Bianca Austin, is available to donate to. Direct resources to continue to fight for justice after the recent failing the indict the officers involved in her death include Stand With Bre, Fight For Breonna and For Breonna. These websites include strategies such as phone and email campaigns, scheduling reminders for social media posts and growing information on the case itself. There is also a GoFundMe accepting donations for Wanda McCade, the mother of Tony McDade, a black trans man who was murdered by the Tallahassee Police Department on May 27th, as well as Ahmaud Arbery, who was killed by officers in Georgia on February 23. A campaign has also been set up for David McAtte’s mother. David was shot and killed on June 1 in Kentucky after police and National Guard members fired into a crowd of curfew violators. Donations to Unicorn Riot, a worker-managed alternative media source, help fund the spread of information, bringing crucial news about activist work and civil disobedience to those who might not be able to access it otherwise. Reclaim The Block aims to defund the Minneapolis police and move money towards other areas of the city. Black Visions Collective, a Minneapolis-based organization, is dedicated to “Black liberation and collective liberation,” according to their website. Donations go towards funding their campaigns and developing the voices of emerging Minneapolis Black leaders. Local Resources Though Brooklyn Bail Fund has reached its demonstration bail goal, further donations go towards keeping the organization running and helping to dismantle the prison industrial complex. This includes freeing immigrants from ICE detention centers, ending pretrial detention in New York and paying bail in cases that could have major systematic impact. Donations to No New Jails NYC helps to keep the city from building new prisons and diverts funds from police towards community causes, like housing costs and ending homelessness. Communities United for Police Reform aims to end discriminatory policing in New York City and help educate people about their rights when approached by authorities. Supporting Black-owned restaurants and businesses in the area are also good ways to help. Dom N’ The City has a list of 25 restaurants you can order from, and Black Owned Brooklyn is dedicated to raising awareness about other local businesses. Consider buying a t-shirt from the Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign. Proceeds will go toward the Breonna Taylor Foundation, through Justice for Breonna. In addition to supporting your community in New York, you can also help from wherever you may be located for the summer. Rolling Stone magazine has a list of individual state resources, providing bail funds for local protests and community aid, among other causes, in almost every area of the country. Petitions Signing petitions—along with emailing and calling your representatives—is another great way to take action. The following petitions can help to enact local and national change, all while taking just a few moments to sign. Justice for Tony McDade Justice For Breonna Taylor #JusticeforBre: Color of Change Petition Justice of Alejandro Vargas Justice for Regis Korchinski-Paquet Justice for Belly Mujinga State of Emergency: End The War of Black People Demand Radical Data on Coronavirus Urge Gov. Cuomo to Repeal 50-A Support the Hands Up Act #DefundThePolice Teach British Schools about the realities of British Imperialism and Colonialism Other Resources Vice magazine’s article gives tips on how to protest safely in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. The Conversation and Teen Vogue have similar articles addressing public concern and any questions you may have regarding sharing your voice. If you can’t protest outside, The Wired and Architectural Digest provide tips on how to help from home, including making art and utilizing social media. Educating yourself on the history of racial inequality and how systemic racism impacts our society also goes a long way. Campaign Zero has a detailed guide about policy solutions that are useful to know, and is a great resource to learn about the laws in your area. Black Lives Matter provides details about their movement, with details specific to COVID-19 and global causes. Showing Up For Racial Justice aims to educate white people about anti-racism and organize ways to fight against white supremacy. Reading up on matters, as well as celebrating Black voices, is also crucial during this time. The Oprah Magazine has a solid selection of books by Black authors to read, with a list of Black-owned bookstores, courtesy of Publisher’s Weekly, that you can buy them from. Purchasing from online Back-owned businesses is another way to show support. The Mad Mommy’s list of Black-owned Etsy shops is great if you want to directly compensate individuals and find unique items. MYMOVE.com has also created a comprehensive guide for info on Black-owned home decor brands and ways the community can help support these businesses. If you can’t afford to donate, many YouTubers are creating monetized videos to help out. Leave them playing on your browser with the sound on and ad blockers off, and ad revenue will go toward various causes, like bail funding and donations for the victim’s families. Playlists of other YouTube videos whose ad revenues go toward donations can be found here and here.