June 2020 News

Photo credit: Karem Yucel / Getty Images

Hello friends.

Whew! We made it to the end of June! How are you all doing? It’s been a heavy month. On the bright side, summer is here. Time to soak up some Vitamin D, even if it’s in your own backyard, or front stoop, or yonder window. We’re getting by ok at Undertow. Work is underway on a few projects, but it’s mostly been about maintaining our mental health and waiting for the world to get back to normal, whatever that means. The concept of normal seems almost foreign lately with all that’s happening.

In a lot of ways, June has felt like a revolutionary month. The conjunction of Black Lives Matter protests with Pride celebrations has been a stark reminder of our nation’s history with racial injustice and police brutality. Whites in America, and around the globe, have been asked to take this time to reflect and speak out on the injustices that still impact minority communities.

Our privilege comes with obligation – a muscle we should not forget how to flex.

The work is far from over; progress is never linear. Cries for justice will continue to be silenced if we’re passive and indifferent. We must continue honoring past legacies and progress by taking this momentum beyond the month of June and far into the future. To “get back to normal” after so much sacrifice and trauma would be a disservice to communities and protesters alike. Instead of wishing for what was, let’s keep having these hard discussions surrounding racism. Growing complicit and numb to terrible headlines will never get us through, we must become involved. New sprouts of change have disrupted the status quo in several communities across our nation, but it’s not enough.

These changes cannot take root and flourish unaccompanied – this is a group project.

Undertow continues to stand with Black Lives Matter and their movement to defund violent police sectors and redistribute those funds to social services in struggling communities. We applaud the protestors and their courage to show up week after week. We hear you and we are with you. Below are some organizations and educational resources that Undertow has great respect for.

+ Black Lives Matter
+ Equal Justice Initiative
+ The Bail Project

+ The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
+ Sundown Towns by James Loewen
+ Barracoon by Zora Neal Hurston

+ Becoming
+ 13th
+ Time
+ Trigger Warning w/ Killer Mike
+ The Life and Death of Marsha P Johnson
+ What Happened, Miss Simone?