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Religious Studies Statement in Solidarity with Black Lives Matter

June 9, 2020

The Department of Religious Studies grieves over the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police. We grieve the countless other black and brown victims of racist violence and white supremacy in the United States. In solidarity with the ongoing protests, we will continue to say their names: Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Philando Castile, Sandra Bland, Stephon Clark, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Quintonio LeGrier, Laquan McDonald, Tony McDade and many, many more.

We also recognize that saying their names is not enough. We must also oppose systemic racism in all its forms. In addition to our work as individuals, as scholars of religious studies, we join with the Board of the American Academy of Religion in the following commitments:

“As scholars of religion, distant though some of our observations may be, our work is wedded to humanity and thus imbued with moral imperatives. Until we call out our own misdeeds and those of the nation, it will be impossible to call us together into community as brothers and sisters. We know better and we must DO better.”

Finally, we embrace and recommend the resources below:
Resources on allyship and anti-racism from educator DeEtta Jones
Harmeet Kaur’s guide to supporting marginalized communities
How to Be Actively Anti-Racist by our Evanston colleague Cheryl Johnson-Odim
Building Anti-Racist White Educators
Steps white academia and white academics must take

 

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