Blogging Bayport Alameda

November 29, 2016

One and one and one is three

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

Tonight the Social Services Human Relations Board is having a really important meeting to get input from the community as to what positive steps can be taken to respond to the bias motivated events locally and nationally.

The most recent event was, of course, the graffiti at Edison.  There was also garbage dumped on the doorstep of the Islamic Center the day after the election which could have been a really unfortunate coincidence, but when taken with the reports of bias related events across the country is hard to dismiss as a coincidence.

From the agenda item:

 At its meeting of July 27, 2016, in response to concerns voiced by some Alameda residents regarding the impact recent and ongoing racially and bias-motivated events across our nation might have on our community, the Board authorized then Vice-President Williams to craft a letter sharing the concerns it had received from members of the community and offering the Board’s assistance in organizing and facilitating a community-wide dialogue. (ATTACHMENT B An Open Letter to the Leaders in our Community)

In late August, the letter was sent to the media, Alameda groups advocating for non-
discrimination and social justice (Black Achievers Alliance, Alameda Unified School District’s (AUSD) Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Queer / Questioning Roundtable, AUSD’s Encinal High School Black Student Union, AUSD’s ALCANCE (Latino Roundtable, Alameda All Faiths Coalition), and the Alameda Police Department (APD) and Police Officer’s Association (POA). The letter was also published as a letter to the editor in both the SUN and the Alameda Journal.

Having received a number of positive responses to its Letter to the Editor, and in light of community actions following the November Presidential election, including student and community-wide protests and vigils, and racist graffiti at one of our elementary schools, President Williams has called a special meeting of the Board. The purpose of the meeting is to invite Alamedans to share their concerns, and acknowledge and celebrate recent community-building events and activities such as the Unity Picnic hosted by AUSD’s Black Achievers Alliance, and to make recommendations about future events or activities that may foster good will in the Alameda community.

Also, there is a group organizing on Facebook to promote similar positive and inclusive actions in Alameda.  You’ll have to request to join but it’s called Alameda Comes Together; Now.

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5 Comments »

  1. What am I, a white heterosexual cisgendered christian male adult, suppose to do?

    Comment by Bart — November 29, 2016 @ 9:31 am

    • Well, for God’s sake, don’t band together with others like yourself. That will brand you a “hater”, straightaway!

      Comment by vigi — November 29, 2016 @ 9:51 am

    • Not clear if this question is posed playfully or sardonically. If it’s the former, I am in the same boat, so here are some ideas, which I have myself done:
      • Join the Facebook group the Lauren mentioned and come to the events
      • Do something symbolically nice to make sure that others feel welcome in our town. The flowers, notes, and big heart-signs the people have been leaving at the Islamic cultural center here in Alameda are very much appreciated by the Alamedans who go there.
      • Make sure that you are getting perspectives from people unlike you, whether it’s locally or nationally. People like Shaun King and Linda Sarsour are some of my favorites on the national scene to follow on Facebook or Twitter.
      • Go out of your way to be polite and friendly to people who don’t have white male etc. privilege. Just a simple hello and a smile passing on the street or in the aisle at the store will brighten other’s days, and probably yours as well.
      • Listen. Your experiences and my experiences are way different than somebody else, and probably not relatable. Listening has opened my eyes a whole lot this last year.
      • Read a book. Fiction or non-fiction. In high school, we had _Black Like Me_ assigned to us to read, and was eye-opening and changed my outlook forever. Or just literature from a different point of view than white males can be interesting and entertaining. A science fiction book by Octavia Butler for instance.

      Comment by therealdanwood — November 29, 2016 @ 12:10 pm

      • Why do I need to change the way I act and think? I’m a neighbor who lives in the same community, I am already polite and friendly. I am well read, and gather perspective from people, like or unlike. Am I responsible for how others choose to feel because of the color of my skin?

        Comment by Bart — November 29, 2016 @ 1:47 pm

  2. vigi, you don’t even need to band together with anyone, you do fine by yourself.

    Comment by John Piziali — November 29, 2016 @ 10:26 am


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