We know you’re hurting right now. So are we we. After all, we are all connected and we are all in this together.
Like many of you, we are a family watching as tensions have reached a crescendo of pain, anger, exhaustion and conflict as well as hope, determination, diligence and action.
With the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic, the racial ills of society have no place to hide. Exacerbated by the last few months filled with the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, many feel the deep wounding of a nation and the cry of its people. We cannot allow the cry to go unanswered nor can we allow the wounding to go unhealed.
My husband, 16 year-old son and I have been asked by many over the last few weeks and months, “what can we do?” “what should we do?” While we don’t pretend to have the answers, we do know that it is time for wise action, accountability, education and transformation. We decided to do something; to start now. Before I share what that is, let’s talk about “The Talk.”
Some of you may already know that many black and brown families have “The Talk” with their children — mostly their sons. The Talk is our attempt to help guide them through the perils of encounters with those in the world who will profile them and worse simply because of the color of their skin. It is never a guarantee of safety, but we do our best to prepare them for what potentially awaits.
It’s time for us all to have “The Talk” and when we’re done, it’s time to get to work. Time to take individual and collective action for social and racial justice reform. It will not be easy. In fact, it will get harder before it gets easier, but we must persevere nonetheless.
During this next part of our journey together, we may read, see, hear, feel and learn things we don’t like. We may feel angry, defensive, attacked and sweepingly lumped together with people who are “not like us.” No matter what arises, we encourage you to lean in anyway. Have an open mind, understand your part and your contribution – especially with the really tough stuff. Take responsibility for your own education about the issues, collaborate and coordinate. Use discernment. Have compassion for yourself and others. Act with integrity and intention.
It is our hope that this resource and intention to offer a “good place to start” will help us all come together to co-create the world we both deserve and desire for ourselves and our children; one where there is social and racial justice for all. Our families are waiting. Our communities are waiting. The nation is waiting. The world is waiting.
Let’s stop waiting and begin ….. #Be the bridge.
To access our family’s Open Letter and resource document to support our moving into a new reality together, click here.
Guidance: This resource is segmented into four sections that can be used for individual or group discussion/work:
(i) Self Inquiry, (ii) Family Inquiry, (ii) Community Inquiry and (iii) Organizational Inquiry; each with its own set of reflections, resources and calls to action.
This is intended to be a gift from our family and was created as an open source, “use-it-as-you-choose” resource that is free. We ask that you pay it forward by taking action. However, if you wish to donate something, there are several non-profits listed in our Open Letter that could benefit from your generosity.
May we all be well and flourish.
With love, care, compassion …. and action,
Michelle, Roberto & Trey Maldonado
A Gen Xer, a Baby Boomer, and a Gen Zer