A mural in memory of George Floyd. Created in Minneapolis by artists Xena Goldman, Cadex Herrera, Greta McLain, Niko Alexander, and Pablo Hernandez. Photo courtesy of Colossal.
“For a few seconds, I remembered that the most abusive parts of our nation obsessively neglect yesterday while peddling in possibility. I remembered that we got here by refusing to honestly remember together. I remember that it was easier to promise than it was to reckon or change.”
— Kiese Laymon, Heavy: An American Memoir
In response to the recent murders of Black Americans including Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and Breonna Taylor, Americans across the nation are trying to reimagine a world where racial violence no longer claims the lives of innocent people. The Sewanee Purple stands in solidarity with our fellow Black students, faculty members, staff, and Sewanee community members. We also commend the efforts of student organizations that have mobilized fundraisers, letter writing campaigns, and other initiatives in support of racial justice. As allies mourn the loss of countless Black lives due to racial violence, we must critically evaluate our nation’s past and honestly reckon with our shortcomings and privileges. May we commit to listen to and take direction from the activists and people of color who speak and lead from experience. It is the hope of the Purple that the Sewanee community will not only peddle in possibility in moments of outrage or reaction, but that we will all permanently reevaluate our approach to justice, equity, and inclusion. Black Lives Matter.