Statement from the UofL Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research
September 24, 2020
The Kentucky Attorney General’s Sept. 23 decision offers no justice to Breonna Taylor or her loved ones, only attempted justification for the senseless taking of her life through actions that were botched at every step. These grievous wrongs replicate and magnify more than 400 years of systemic racism that have denied peace, prosperity, and life itself to generations of Black people, often at the hands of those authorized to protect and serve.
Grief, sadness, rage, mourning, and determination are the consequence. Change is the only real solution. “In every age, no matter how cruel the oppression by those in power,” this institute’s namesake, activist Anne Braden once said, “there have been those who struggled for a better world.“ We at the Anne Braden Institute stand in solidarity with the many who struggle to make Black Lives Matter in Louisville and in these United States. We condemn the stubborn unwillingness of the white-dominant power structure even to acknowledge how white supremacy has defined our nation from its start, and still does. We commit ourselves to listen to and heed Black voices, to confront white complicity, and to write, speak, march, study, mobilize the vote, and more in this continuing struggle locally and nationally. Only when we achieve the anti-racist majority Anne Braden envisioned will a true beloved community become possible, and we encourage our network to find organizations to work with to transform anguish into action.
Meanwhile, we seek understanding, and our community hurts, especially those among us who are Black. In the UofL community, please know that there are resources for helping to process this latest trauma. The College of Arts and Sciences, for example, is hosting 2 restorative talking circles this Friday, Sept. 25, facilitated by Ms. Tamara Russell, from Honors and the MLK Scholars Program, and Dr. Cherie Dawson-Edwards, from Criminal Justice and Social Change. The circle process will emphasize truth telling, healing, and reconciliation and hopes to create connections with others that are often necessary to cope with community trauma. Below is the information you will need if you wish to join.
The University of Louisville Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research