a call from the Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism Organizing Collective
Since the inauguration of our current president and the installation of his regime, the executive branch of our government has unleashed a myriad of policies that attack the most vulnerable in our world. Women, immigrants, and children have been put in the sites of this regime’s line of fire — but mostly it’s Black and brown women, Muslim immigrants, and children who are being attacked through the new Republican regime’s policies.
We are one of the richest, most well-resourced countries in the world. Yet when one of the most brutal wars rages and millions of Syrians are fleeing for their lives, the newly inaugurated President of the United States issues an Executive Order that prioritizes the lives of white, Christian immigrants above others and blatantly discriminates against Black and brown Muslims. It is no exaggeration to say that these actions are killing people and tearing families apart. These actions are morally and ethically reprehensible.
As Black people, we understand what it means to be vilified and scapegoated, we understand what it means to be actively discriminated against. As has been true in times past, and is true now, it is not the violence and hatred of the enemy that is so jarring. It is the silence of those you thought were your friends and allies. It is the deafening silence that hurts the worst. The inaction, the empty words, “I’m sorry, I don’t know what to do” or even worse, the grandiose statements that do nothing to pull people together and organize resistance to save people’s lives that sting and hurt the worst. So we as Black people refuse to do that in this moment, we refuse to be silent while our Black and brown Muslim immigrant family including those from Sudan and Somalia — our Black brothers and sisters — are turned away to face violence and war. We refuse to stand by and give in to hopelessness, fear, and feeling overwhelmed.
As Unitarian Universalists we are not just called to speak out against this, to name explicitly and directly that this is evil in our world. We are called to actively fight it. And it would be easy in this moment to concentrate all of our energy against and in opposition to one man. But we will not do just that. Our faith calls us to be in community, and it is to community we turn. Our faith calls us to believe in abundance, in generosity, to step out of fear and to build that which we cannot see but we know is possible. We will not abandon our belief in Beloved Community because in these times we need it now more than ever, we will not give into fear, and while our fighting may begin in anger, it is sustained in love. In love for the Syrian refugee, in love for our Somali brothers and sisters, in love for our Iranian human family, in love for our Sudanese family, in love for our Mexican neighbors.
We know that every, single white European was once an immigrant to this country. They were also colonialists who enslaved our Black ancestors and nearly destroyed the Indigenous peoples of the Americas. But we do not lose hope for descendants of these lost white immigrants, we know they can still honor their treaty agreements to the Indigenous people and we know they still have time to pay reparations to Black people for generations of cruelly stolen work. We do not give into hatred and fear and scarcity. We as Black Unitarian Universalists believe in the power of our humanness and our communities, and we believe our liberation is connected to all those oppressed around us. This is part of what it means to proclaim that we are part of an interconnected web of all life. We believe an injustice to one is an injustice to all. So to the President and his administration in this moment, we understand your attack against our Black and brown Muslim family, against our Mexican family, against women, against children, and against our health and wellbeing is a direct attack on all of us. We will not stand for it and we are calling every Unitarian Universalist of every color, to be in solidarity with us. And to commit to acting with us.
Here are some resources for guidance on ways you can actively resist:
- Executive Order Restricting Muslim Entry to the United States Fact Sheet
- Community Guidance: Restrictions on Muslim Entry to the U.S.
Women’s Refugee Commission
Revolutionary Love Project
National Sancturay Coalition Toolkit
Council on American Islamic Relations
We recognize that historically it is never the politicians and the business people that lead the march toward justice. It is us, the everyday people of faith, the faith leaders, the journalists who refuse to be silenced, the Black women, the LGBTQ community, the families, the Mothers, the children. It is us coming together and holding fast to our love for one another, holding to the vision of Beloved Community, making a way out of no way. It’s on us, ALL of us. Let’s go.