By Kenyatta Yamel, Black Live Matter Committee Leader
The First Unitarian Society of Milwaukee is developing a special service for October 15 devoted to overcoming white supremacy and developing the resources for overcoming racism. This is a follow-up to the May 7 event at the church, which was a direct responds to the call of Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism to address the ways in which white supremacy is reinforced within our denomination.
To help in this effort we have invited Christopher D. Sims, an African-American leader in Unitarian Universalism. Christopher is a love and justice ambassador and the co-leader of Diverse Revolutionary Unitarian Universalist Multicultural Ministries (DRUUMM.) He has been on tour through the Love Is Revolutionary Ministries. He participated in solidarity actions recently in Charlottesville and will be relating his experiences. Christopher will be sharing the pulpit with our senior minister the Rev. Jennifer Nordstrom.
We will also be continuing the public witness activity organized by our Black Lives Matter group with a vigil after the second service, complete with music. We continue to press for changes in the manner in which police respond to calls in the African-American community, in line with a comprehensive list of suggested changes in policing in Milwaukee drafted by the U.S. Justice Department. We seek to end the cycle of police rushing into the community with guns blazing. The history of police violence suggests that “shoot to kill” is a policy reserved for communities of color. We need to change this policy in order to make black lives matter the same as anyone else. Our vigils are community events and we welcome and encourage outside participation.