How SHA’s Core Values Can be Implemented Into the Black Lives Matter Movement

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Omar Taweh @omariospizza on instagram

The unjust murders of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Mubarak Soulemane, and an overwhelmingly large number of people that have not been mentioned has brought thousands and even millions of people to the streets yelling “Black Lives Matter!”, protesting and demanding justice for all. SHA’s core values are centered on integrity, excellence, compassion, and most importantly, social justice. So what does a small school on a hill have to do with a movement so large? Well, as Mr. Marino so fondly puts it, “SHA is a microcosm of the world.”

 

Integrity

Integrity is a very important trait to have and is constantly reinforced in SHA. Integrity is not only being truthful but it also includes humbleness and open-mindedness. Listen to your Black, Indigenous, and POC (Person/People of color) peers. Issues like Cultural Appropriation or the use of the “N-word” are often swept under the rug. When your Black, POC, or Indigenous friends say something is wrong or something makes them uncomfortable, put away your pride and truly listen to them. Recognizing the mistakes you have made and learning from them is the best way we can make progress as a community.

 

Excellence

Our excellence is what makes SHA special. It is important to read up on Black History that does not only center around slavery: events like the Tulsa Massacre where a once vibrant and successful 32 acre “Black Wall Street” was brutally burned down or Claudette Colvin who gave up her seat on the bus before Rosa Parks did. We are living in a time of change and many terms like “misogynoir” and “colorism” are being frequently talked about. Do your research and read from Black, Indigenous, and POC perspectives.

 

Compassion

Having compassion for others is crucial when fighting for other’s human rights. Check on your Black, Indigenous, and POC friends. Every day they see or hear about people who look like them being treated unjustly, discriminated against, or even murdered on social media. Be a trustworthy outlet and ally and reach out to them.

 

Social Justice

The thousands of black people murdered every day is a human rights and social justice issue. With social media at its peak, staying up to date has become easier than ever.  Instagram accounts like @Blackandbrownatsha or @Blacklivesmatternewhaven are only a few of the many local activism accounts that you can follow to stay updated. In order for there to be change nationally, we must start locally. Sign petitions, donate to individuals who are seeking for aid, go to protests or forums (that follow the CDC guidelines of course), and be proactive.

 

We have to remember that as a community, we have to be made aware of current issues happening today. This school is not a bubble and it’s our job to not allow that to happen. Push for these topics to be brought up, have conversations with your friends. Communication and education are one of the most important tools for change. Black lives matter and they will always matter everywhere.