D.C. Mayor Bowser’s “Draft Racial Equity Action Plan ” (REAP) is a public relations document which reflects a continued commitment to the systemic foundations of racial inequities. As a follow-up to the empty gesture of painting the words “Black Lives Matter” on 800 16th Street Northwest, Washington, DC and declaring that space “Black Lives Matter Plaza ”, the REAP suggests that the state structures which maintain settler colonialism and capitalism can be a remedy for racial inequity. “It is our charge and our responsibility to put in place policies that are intentional about ending structural racism and reversing the legacies of policies that intentionally locked Black and brown Washingtonians out of opportunity and the ability to build wealth,” Bowser said when announcing the REAP on November 16, 2022 as a first for D.C. of such a plan.
Gunn leads a congregation at Clearwater Missionary Baptist Church in Ocklawaha. A retired teacher, he served as president of the Florida chapter of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association (BFAA) from 2009, when he co-founded the organization, until 2018. And this 61-year-old has been the face of growers grappling with the Sunshine State for its first and only license to cultivate and sell medical marijuana. Until recently the $1 billion Florida market has been in the clutches of a half-dozen companies, essentially an oligopoly. But Gunn’s father was part of the billion-dollar settlements in Pigford v. Glickman and In re Black Farmers Discrimination Litigation (the so-called Pigford II), the landmark class-action suits against the U.S. Department of Agriculture in which it was established that systemic harm had been done to Black growers through federal loan discrimination.
As our second pandemic Labor Day approaches, Black worker leaders are determined to never again bear the brunt of a national crisis as they have under Covid-19. How can we make the recovery more equitable — and improve conditions for Black workers before the next crisis hits? We asked nine leading Black labor organizers and policy advocates for their views.
It should be no surprise that White Supremacy habits are hard to break. In fact, as I’ve stared at this blog post over the last few days, the habit of perfectionism has deterred me from feeling good enough with just about anything I’ve typed up. The perfectly made cocktail of imposter syndrome and an existential crisis prompted by the world around us hasn’t helped either. During a crisis, it can be easy to fall back on habits of white supremacy and forget the hard work we’ve done to cultivate different ways of being. So what are some antidotes, alternative mindsets, and practices we can center right now?