Hosted by Jim Ellis and joined by a multitude of special guests, this conversation — presented by Out Leadership member firm Bloomberg LP — explored the intersection of race and queer identity.
In the fight for equity, activists have to sadly play a tricky game of making sure their movement is not too complicated for mass consumption, even if the problem is far from simple. Nicole explains that LGBTQ POC often have to sideline their race or their sexuality in the fight for equality because it makes the movement cleaner and easier to digest. The importance of intersectionality and making sure that every person is represented in the fight for equity is an integral part of the movement.
A key step in dismantling racist police departments and ending police brutality is making sure that every police officer has a body camera that cannot be removed or turned off. Without this accountability courts and civilian complaint review boards will have a harder time bringing real justice to victims of police brutality.
“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept & celebrate those differences.” – #AudreLorde, writer, lesbian, feminists
— Out Leadership (@OutLeadership) June 29, 2020
Frederick talks about how we need to restructure our courts and how society treats issues surrounding race. Mainly he expresses the need for the recommendations handed down by civilian oversight agencies to be taken more seriously by judges. A judge has the right to completely reject or change the recommendation by such agencies if they would like to. This decreases the trust in the court and only gives a single party more overall power. He also explains that we need to bring in whiteness and the supremacy that whiteness brings to the table when talking about race and discrimination. Instead of talking about just POC and LGBTQ peoples, we need to discuss the root of the problem and how we can topple that.
Going off of Fredericks point, Victoria explains that we need to completely restructure our police departments. First step is to make our police more diverse. She explains that when you have a black police chief, their police department has 70% lower risk of police brutality. On top of this, we need to leave mental health problems to professionals that have been fully trained to do that kind of work. We should not have to involve our police officers in matters that are not violent crimes.
One of the key points that all four speakers emphasized was that we need to keep the movement going. Frederick says that, “this moment feels different”. He explains that we have an opportunity to make real progress in dismantling systemic racism and discrimination in this country, that is if we dont let the movement die. Media will start showing the next major headline that will slowly move BLM offstage, but it is up to us and city and local governments to not let the movement dwindle out and it is up to allies to lift up the voices of the leaders in the BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities. Victoria goes off of that point and explains that even once a progressive law is put in place that the battle is not over, we need to ensure that that law is being upheld and not manipulated to perpetuate the same narrative that has plagued BIPOC and LGBTQ+ folk in this country for centuries.