There are times in history when individuals, institutions, and full communities must stand up and raise their voices…
To our CMCB Community and Beyond,
As many of you know, CMCB is continuing to do the work of finding its voice as a fully-connected and unified community. On the other hand, we are cognizant of the fact that an organization like ours, that typically works in 19 neighborhoods in an extremely segregated city, is also working with individual communities in Boston who are living very different lives each day.
We recognize that the events in Atlanta have filled many of our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander (AAPI) families with a sense of sadness that is overwhelming. Every marginalized group experiences these kinds of moments differently, but there are some common threads. The fear and anger are always overwhelming. There is a wondering of: “why do people in this country hate me so much, when I love and believe in the potential of this country so much?” There is also disappointment in the realization that, although we have come so far, we still have so far to go.
There are times in history when individuals, institutions, and full communities must stand up and raise their voices…Lecolion Washington
Rather than making a statement of solidarity, which would come across as self-serving and performative, we are asking for a call to action:
In our spheres of power and influence, we must all acknowledge and speak out against the collective crescendo of oppression and violence that has been directed at our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander community, particularly over the course of the past year. The oppression has existed for a long time, but it has assuredly increased since those in the highest rungs of our government unashamedly dog-whistled the blame for the coronavirus toward the AAPI community.
Encourage Others to Speak Out.
Each one of us has the power to be a force to combat this narrative, and in that spirit, we ask that each of you activate your families, employers, legislators and all other spaces within your sphere of influence as it relates to denouncing violence against the AAPI community. Let’s encourage our personal, professional, and political networks to stand up.
We also ask that you, as individuals, support AAPI-owned businesses. Additionally, engaging with AAPI-led nonprofits and nonprofits that support the AAPI community is a meaningful next step. This negative rhetoric has heavily impacted these businesses and organizations, and now is an important time for us to rally around them.
Although no group is a monolith, we ask that you reach out to your Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander family, friends, and colleagues. The shootings in Atlanta are landing heavily on many in this community, and all other communities should rally around those in need at this time.
This, my friends, is what equity looks like. Even when we are tired, we come together in support of those communities that are in need. Although compassion is not a surefire antidote for all that ails us, it is definitely a key component in our healing.
There are times in history when individuals, institutions, and full communities must stand up and raise their voices in support of those who are marginalized, while also speaking out against those who would try to instill fear among us. As most of us are fully aware, this is one of those times, and, as has historically been the case, CMCB wants to continue to be part of the solution in whatever ways that we can.
Lecolion Washington, CMCB Executive Director
Martin Thomson, CMCB Board President
Brenda Ross, CMCB Board Co-Vice President
Kurt Hakansson, CMCB Board Co-Vice President
Mary Carney, CMCB Co-Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee
Tonia Speicher, CMCB Co-Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee