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August Newsletter

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News and Actions

Photo by Teemu Paananen

Demand Justice for Jacob Blake

On August 23, Police Officer Rusten Sheskey shot Jacob Blake in the back seven times in Kenosha, Wisconsin. While Blake is now in stable condition, at least one bullet went through Blake’s spinal cord, leaving him paralyzed. Two of the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave as protestors have taken to the streets to demand justice and systemic change. On August 25th, Kyle Rittenhouse, a white 17-year-old, shot and killed two protestors with an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and injured another. Rittenhouse has been charged two counts of first-degree homicide and one count of attempted homicide. Read the latest updates here.

Take Action:

1. Donate to the Milwaukee Freedom Fund.
2. Sign the Color of Change petition.

Boycotts Across Professional Sports

Professional athletes boycotted playing games in the days following the shooting of Jacob Blake in efforts to further invoke change towards systemic racism. Four years after Colin Kaepernick first knelt to protest social injustice and police brutality, this is the first time athletes across sports have collectively demanded action by refusing to play. NBA players resumed playoff games after agreeing to enact commitments around establishing a social justice coalition, converting arenas into voting facilities, and adding advertisements to raise awareness around voter access and opportunity.

Take Action:

1. Donate to Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp.

Black Women Make Political History

Kamala Harris joined Joe Biden’s presidential ticket, making her the United State’s first African-American and South Asian-American Vice Presidential nominee. While her past as a prosecutor has come under harsh criticism, Harris affirmed her commitment to implementing criminal justice reform efforts including ending private prisons, legalizing marijuana, and abolishing the death penalty. Earlier this month, Ilhan Omar, the first Somali-American Member of Congress and the first woman of color to represent Minnesota, won renomination.

Take Action:

1. Register to Vote - Text ‘VOTE’ to 56005

Demand Justice for Elijah McClain and Breonna Taylor

Elijah McClain’s parents filed a lawsuit against the city of Aurora, Colorado, police officers, and medical officers involved in their son's death. No charges have been filed nearly one year since the altercation, and although there are three ongoing investigations, McClain’s parents hope this lawsuit will continue the fight for racial justice. In Louisville, 71 people were arrested amidst a demonstration spreading attention to the 171 days that have passed since Breonna Taylor was murdered. After dozens of interviews and over 1,500 pages of police records, a clearer picture of her life leading up to the incident emerged.

Take Action:

1. Sign the Color for Change and Change.org petitions for Elijah McClain
2. Call +1 (202) 750-4988 to receive talking points and get connected with 4 lawmakers responsible for holding Elijah’s murderers accountable.
3. Visit Fight For Breonna

Stories

Read Between the Wine - A Book Club for Black Women

"I am deeply invested in creating communities that promote self-reflection, connection through literature and shared stories, and ultimately elevation for black women.” - Chelsea Scott, founder of Read Between the Wine.

Chelsea Scott founded Read Between the Wine as a space for Black women between 20-30 years old to connect through an intellectually stimulating, untraditional social community. Read Between the Wine is committed to amplifying the voices of Black authors using literature as an entry point to connect Black women in their twenties from all walks of life. The books Read Between the Wine selects inform social and educational experiences that contribute to the constructive development of members, as well as community service initiatives targeting marginalized groups.

Check out Read Between the Wine on Instagram and read more from its founder Chelsea Scott here.

Additional Resources

Books to Read (from Black-owned bookstores): Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America - Ibram X. Kendi

Videos to Watch: James Baldwin Discusses Racism, Police: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Check out our website for a growing list of resources and follow us on Instagram for more frequent news updates.