08/14/14 #BLACKandSTEM

My social media accounts have been rightfully saturated with events surrounding the killing of a black teenager Michael Brown by a Ferguson, MO police officer.  The response to the killing has brought a number of social justice issues to the forefront.  What is happening now in a place – much like any other city in the US – that has a long, strong and deep-running history of injustice toward the black and the poor has been a catalyst for many to pose the question of:

How do we leverage our experiences, expertise, and access to resources to address the issues impacting the black community?

Answer in your own way.  Share the social justice issue important to you and what you think your (or our) contribution is and can be.

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3 responses to “08/14/14 #BLACKandSTEM

  1. My entire area of research as an ecologist is grounded upon understanding spatial assimilation. Segregation is a social force to be reckoned with. Leveraging our expertise requires each of us in our fields as respected experts to not just highlight the situation but to continue to press on both sides the requirements of our own communities to address inequities and social justice through the means in which the legal process allows. Furthermore we have earned the rights to fight through social injustice per the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement yet what is impressively clear at the moment is that the state of Black American communities have deteriorated in our pride of such accomplishments. In the interest of the ensuring my comments are not seen as being insensitive there requires some self accountability of each of us within our homes, communities and cities to recognize that there are some concurrent situations that create and escalate social injustice. There is the oppressive nature of the cities in which we live and the inequitable presence of our own culture in decision making processes, there is also a devious spirit of self indignation by SOME not ALL of our Black leaders whom are charged with representing our best interest, there is also a culture of complacency and entitlement for equality and access for which we have misunderstood our role in MAINTAINING. There is no rest for our communities as 13% of the population in the United States….but when we make up 50%-60% of the population of a township or a county there is no reason why our efforts should be only catalyzed by an incident. We see a reactive culture and as an expert in my field I do not let up on the professional side nor do I relieve my own community from the required energy it takes to sustain a healthy social justice initiative climate. I am outraged at what is going on in our generation.

    Our energy must serve a collective goal. Action oriented change requires a roadmap so the first thing is to generate the information with which we feel lays it out on the table. The next thing is to identify what the consequences have been because of disparities, racism, social injustice and speculate what the state of these issues will be in the next 25-50 years without inaction. Furthermore not just recommendations but a set of action items to accomplish for addressing the change we want and need. Much of our efforts should begin however with a call for deep internal reflection of Black families and Black communities. There are some hurtful bad habits we have picked up and without calling them out and holding ourselves accountable there is no change. Transparency is something we ask for, yet we have to be willing to look at ourselves as well as the actions of the system to determine what is hurting, hindering us and how to heal.

    I believe BlackandSTEM is a new generation of intellectuals that have access to resources in Black America that would push Black media, Black politics and Black finances towards a consensus for working collaboratively.

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