BLACK LIVES MATTER.
A Personal Message from Jenny Lam
Since the closing of schools, I have been at my desk, on countless Zoom meetings, in neighborhoods, or attempting to celebrate the end of the school year with my children -- all under the new normal and the distance learning that the COVID-19 pandemic has thrust upon us.
But then I saw the murder of George Floyd.
For decades, as a community organizer in Oakland and San Francisco, I saw up close how racism devastates our children, our families, and our cities. I worked for years to create improvements, small and large, to bring equity and justice to the families I work for.
While my focus tended to be centered on the Asian American and immigrant community, I worked with our Black community who fought tirelessly for equity. As an Asian American, I understand that real progress toward equity does not happen unless the needs of our Black community are met with meaningful policy change.
What happened to George Floyd, to Breonna Taylor, to Ahmaud Arbery, Mario Woods, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, Oscar Grant and all the souls who died at the hand of police brutality should never have happened. And now we witness, even under the global scrutiny of social and traditional media, it continues.
Asian American leaders are working in solidarity with our city’s Black leadership to make real change and support the ideas for reform that come from the Black Community.
The civil rights movement paved the way for the Asian American community. Our histories are intertwined in search of equity and racial justice.
As someone who benefitted from that struggle, I will not be idle on this issue.
Racist and hateful attitudes can begin early in life. It is upon us to show and teach our children better.