I’m going to jump right into this topic without preamble…
So many have died, or have been brutalized needlessly, simply because of the colour of their skin or ethnicity. This needs to stop. NOW. Social media is playing a huge part in getting the word out.
White people of privilege, myself included, really can’t understand how frightening it is, as a person of colour, to venture outside…couldn’t imagine parents having to teach specific sets of rules just to keep us out of harm’s way, indeed alive, on a daily basis. Social media is finally doing just that…enabling us to imagine the horror…because let’s face it, that’s what it is, horrific.
While we can’t change the past, I long for the day when humans aren’t judged by their race, sexual orientation, religion, gender, body weight…oh my, the list has no end.
As people of privilege it’s not for us to decide that our actions shouldn’t be hurtful, or offensive, to a group of people. If indigenous people, for example, tell us it’s disrespectful for non-indigenous people to wear feathered headdresses, our immediate response should be, “I apologize. I will never do it again.” It’s not for us to tell anyone their cultural beliefs have no merit.
When tragedy strikes, people do what they know in an effort to help. My go-to medium is fabric. After George Floyd’s and Breonna Taylor’s death, I didn’t know what to do…how could human beings treat their fellow human so heinously!
I had created some font-y designs in the past. Combing a couple of them, I came up with a design that spoke to me. I searched for beautiful skin tones in Kona Cotton Solid fabric by Robert Kaufman. I constructed the wall hanging, then quilted it. Quilting is not my strong suit but I loved the way it turned out. Now what to do with it, I wondered.
Longing for a life without racism for our future generations, I was moved to support our local youth of colour. During this journey I met Mekisha Johnston. An employee of DCS Community Services, she pointed me in the right direction.
During the month of March Mekisha, along with members in the community, raffled off the small quilt to raise funds for two local scholarships, The ABSW Ngena Bernard Scholarship and the Lake Loon Cherry Brook Seniors Scholarship Fund. Here is a link to their supportive facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1140751566295487
Recently I’ve partnered with Frame Plus. Art http://frameplusart.ca/ They have produced some beautiful prints of the quilt.
All the proceeds from these prints will go toward the above mentioned scholarships as well. I’ve included a direct link below if would like to help support our adults of the future.
Please don’t stop learning…reach out to cultures different from your own to see how you might help. Inquire if what you’re doing is helpful or harmful…it’s okay to ask. It means you care enough to seek the truth.
No one said it better than Jane Elliot when I heard her say, “There is only one race…the human race.” If you haven’t heard her lesson to her third graders, I encourage you to watch it now. It’s the most thought provoking video and very ahead of its time for 1968.
At the time of this writing it is Asian Heritage Month. I would be remiss if I didn’t draw attention to their rich culture and history. They too have endured much in the past, and still do today. Please take time, as will I, to educate yourself. They matter too!