Peter Swords

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Beneficiaries of white privilege must speak out against racism

Peter Swords

Beneficiaries of white privilege must speak out against racism

Peter Swords signed a letter titled Beneficiaries of white privilege must speak out against racism, which was published by on October 4, 2016.[1]


"To the Editor:
"This letter is from people who benefit from white privilege in Syracuse and Central New York. We are strongly opposed to the pervasive white supremacy and racism in our society that allow the commonplace murders of African-American men, women and children by police officers. "Serve and protect" has too often become "intimidate and shoot." Overwhelmingly, people of color in the U.S. fear and mistrust police and a judicial system that is stacked against them.
"The commercial media frequently suggests that it is only people of color who oppose these injustices. We want to make it absolutely clear that the undersigned and millions of other white Americans stand with the Black Lives Matter movement and protest-actions by others in Central New York and across the United States.
"We specifically support the recent protests by athletes at Nottingham and Jamesville-DeWitt high schools. Acting against injustice is always difficult, and these young people are to be applauded for representing the values our country is supposed to stand for.
"We urge white people to step outside the comfort of white privilege and, for example, try to imagine how it feels to be a parent explaining to your 10-year old son the special police rules he must understand and follow if he is to survive.
"Keith L. Scott was murdered Sept. 20, 2016 in Charlotte N.C., while waiting to pick up his child at a bus stop. A few days earlier, a man with his hands raised was murdered in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and a few days before that, a teenager carrying a BB gun was murdered in Columbus, Ohio. All were African-Americans, all were murdered by police.
"This epidemic of "legal" killings reflects a resurgence of white supremacist attitudes that must be addressed by all fair-minded white people. We urge you to speak and act against racism in your daily lives.
"We want justice now!