Racism, up close and personal, reared its ugly self this past weekend at Lake Monroe with the physical assault of Vauhxx Booker, and Monday in Downtown Bloomington with a car driving through and injuring protesters following the rally to support the lives of Black and Brown Hoosiers.
These two recent incidents followed closely on the heels of two other law enforcement racial profiling incidents in Monroe and Owen Counties. This is not happening somewhere far away, in another state. This is in our community, our state, right here in Indiana.
The Black Lives Matter movement is crucial, and we all must join in solidarity to stand up to this criminal behavior and actively work to dismantle the system of oppression and inequity that’s plagued too many of our friends and family members. And as white Hoosiers, it is our responsibility to accept the fact that systemic racism has hovered over us our whole lives – whether it’s in our towns, within our friend groups, or even at our family dinner tables.
We can be outraged and continue paying lip service, or we can recognize that we can use our power at the ballot box and vote for candidates who understand that institutional racism is real, pervasive, and allows for inequity to persist and hate crimes to continue. If we remain silent, we are complicit. It’s time to start speaking out.