Many words have been written, and many more will be written, about the shocking and senseless killing of George Floyd. This outpouring of grief and anger from so many people throughout this country is, in a dark time, a ray of light: it illuminates a widespread need to be heard, to stand up to injustice, and especially to join together and to join voices in denouncing racism in all of its hideous forms. It reflects our knowledge that this act of barbarism, which took the life of a flesh and blood man, a father and a son, was more a symptom of a disease within our society, and one of many tragic and evil acts, than it was an isolated incident. We know the names of some, but too many other victims of racial brutality have died without us ever knowing their names or acknowledging their suffering. The expressions of pain and frustration show how deep our need is for community, for common purpose, especially when we are confronted by forces that would seek disunity and division.
We, the men and women of LRN, are reminded at this time of our core value of humility.
As individuals and as an organization, we reconfirm our duty and commitment to combat racism, and yet we also share the need to be a part of something larger, a true movement demanding justice. We join the swelling choir in its song of lamentation and resolve. With so many other people of good will, together we condemn all racism against Black people in all its forms, from wherever it emanates, and however it is expressed, whether in police brutality or in state sponsored discrimination or in conspiratorial whispers in private quarters.
We reject the notion that any progress we have made is an answer to, let alone an excuse for, not achieving what we must accomplish.
We at LRN occupy a place of particular responsibility. We have, all of us, chosen to make our day-in and day-out work inspiring principled behavior. For us, the challenge and obligation to help drive change is neither new nor occasioned by the recent particularly barbaric and visible acts of violence. Our commitment to justice and to racial equality is central to what we do and how we do it. It will not end when justice is done in a particular case or in a few cases, or in many cases. We know that the journey to true racial justice and equality is a long one.
Accordingly, at this time on this journey, we will, among other things:
- Make a meaningful contribution to an organization which seeks to remedy racial injustice. We welcome all thoughts, views and recommendations from the LRN community.
- Support our colleagues’ rights to speak out and protest peacefully and in the spirit of the LRN
- Collect and share resources with colleagues and our community to help those who wish to educate, learn and listen to understand and then take effective action to counter racial injustice.
- Communicate with and deliver to our partners the training, innovation and support they need to shape ethical cultures that are just, equitable, inclusive and diverse.
- Seek a collaboration with city mayors and police departments around the nation to bring effective training to their officers and leaders.
In all of this, we will be animated and sustained by both resolve and hope, which also strengthen our faith that the moral arc of the universe does indeed bend toward justice. Most importantly, we will remain emphatic in our commitment to do our part, and everything we can, in bending it.
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