Alka's Angle September 25, 2020

Dear Broadway Community,

I want to first take a moment to thank you for the calls, cards, messages, flowers, wine :-) , chocolate, and the surprise zoom celebration with so many of you. I am grateful to Satia and Charolette for planning, and for every one of you who participated. I had a perfect day! I felt special and grateful to be part of the Broadway family. Thank you all for being such an amazing part of this community and for making this a welcoming place for all.

The week however has been a juxtaposition of celebration and pain, of joy and numbness. The decision of the grand jury in Kentucky to charge only one officer, and that too with three counts of "wanton endangerment in the first degree" has once again shaken the trust of black and brown people in the legal system of our country! And in this very volatile and precarious season of our country -- people of faith, people of privilege and allies are needed, more than ever, to stand up and speak up against these injustices. Our country needs our voice, people of God! 


I know for some of us this is a difficult place to be and is beyond our understanding. Friends -- unless we have been in the shoes of any BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color), we will never understand! In fact, we cannot fully understand any other person’s experience for each person is unique and feels differently. All we can do is to listen. So I invite us to listen to our black and brown siblings and support them in their quest for justice and equity. 


I also know that for some “Black Lives Matter” is a racist movement, and therefore the claim we hear frequently, by well-meaning people is that All Lives Matter. While that is accurate -- all lives do matter -- what we need to understand is that black and brown and indigenous lives are not being treated as if they matter. I try to understand it this way: the head is a part of the body and while the whole body matters, when we have a headache we take medication for headache. We do not take heart medication and hope the headache will go away (that could potentially be a dangerous thing to do). We also don’t say, ‘my body hurts’ but ‘my head hurts.’ Similarly -- yes -- all lives are precious but until we honor and respect black and brown and trans and indigenous bodies, all lives matter is an empty phrase. I also invite you to watch this very short video from CNN that might be helpful! Beloveds, I am not pointing fingers towards anyone or looking for an argument, but asking that we be mindful of the pain and grief that is being experienced by some members of our community -- as we as a community can not be a healthy until all of our members feel valued and loved and cared for and accepted. 


Beloveds let us all do our part to make this world, our country and our community a better place for all, specially for our black, brown and  transgender siblings. May God give us the strength we need for each day. And remember, I am always your partner in justice and in ministry,