Letter: Black Lives Matter at Brunswick church

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The Unitarian Universalist Church of Brunswick recently installed a Black Lives Matter banner on the side of our building.

Black Lives Matter is the latest chapter in our nation’s long struggle for racial justice. The movement began in response to the 2012 killing of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, and it continues to protest how black people and other people of color are deprived of basic rights and dignity. The Black Lives Matter movement advocates for all marginalized voices – women, people with disabilities, LGBTQ people, the undocumented.

Our Black Lives Matter banner expresses our support for this movement, as we understand it. Our banner also reflects the work our congregation is doing within our hearts and souls. We live in a society where white people are afforded privileges. Those privileges are often denied to people of color, who instead face obstacles and biases. As a congregation, we are trying to identify and understand those privileges and biases so that we can work more effectively to help create a just and inclusive society.

Our banner represents the world we dream of: A world where people of color are treated fairly by the justice system and have the same educational, housing, and job opportunities as white people, a world where skin color does not signify inherent worth or lack of worth. We seek to raise our awareness and to help build communities where people who seem different are no longer seen as “other,” but who instead can be understood and accepted for who they are.

Sylvia Stocker, minister