|Enslaved African Memorial|
By Patricia King-Butler,
Executive Director, Enslaved African Memorial Committee
We all witnessed 9 Minutes of a public lynching! Our tears are never ending, our rage is unrelenting, and our pain continues unabated since our first ancestors were kidnapped from Africa and enslaved in the New World that became America. When does the dehumanization end? Folks of goodwill must reflect on their complacency in the continual physical, political, social, and economic lynching of Black people!
The Enslaved African Memorial Committee (EAMC) seeks to confront the issue of race by educating the public about the long and complex history of slavery and its lasting impact on American society. In the State of New Jersey, where slavery was a recognized institution from the time of its first settlement by European colonist, not much is written about that history. The EAMC will work diligently to address that omission. The mission and goals of the EAMC at this critical time in our history directly align with the outcry and protest we have seen displayed across the nation and around the world at the senseless, and brutal killing of George Floyd.
George Floyd’s death is yet another display of the callous malfeasance and savage acts of violence that are committed against Black people daily. The work to be done to combat the cycle of ignorance, implicit bias and systemic racism that permeates our culture is never ending. The criminalization of the Black Community that subjects us to the status of second class citizens is a war in which we remain defenseless.
We should never forget the stolen lives of Emmett Till, Martin Luther King, Jr, Malcolm X, Phillip Pannel, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, Tamir Rice, Fred Hampton, Sean Bell, Amadou Diallo, Sandra Bland, Medgar Evers, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many more. George Floyd now joins this long and painful list of Black people whose lives were abruptly ended and futures sacrificed at the whim of the State. How will it end? It’s up to us. #WECANTBREATHE