Sunday, May 31, 2020

Police Use Of Force Project, Police Scorecard Project, Campaign Zero Project

I’m taking a break from the garden posts today because I’m so angry, disgusted, and heartbroken by what is going on in our country, and has been going on for my entire life.

This weekend I and two writer colleagues had a virtual writing retreat on Zoom and we used a lot of our time processing what’s played out over the past few days. It’s horrific to see the videos of police attacking and assaulting U.S. citizens. I applaud the few who have joined their community protests, who have listened and supported, but the vast majority of police officers being documented by professional and citizen journalists are being brutal, vicious, and totally beyond the pale of what anyone could think is reasonable.

In an effort to find something in the way of a solution to all this, I came upon these projects and I want to share them.

The first is the Police Use of Force Project.

Please check them out here: POLICE USE OF FORCE PROJECT

The second is the Police Scorecard Project.

You can check them out here: POLICE SCORECARD PROJECT

The third is Campaign Zero Project.

You can join this movement here: CAMPAIGN ZERO

It is well past the point when our country should have rooted out racism in law enforcement (and in general). All people deserve to be treated with dignity and respect by law enforcement officers. Every child should grow up with the knowledge that they can expect protection and safety from police officers. Every adult should walk or drive knowing they can look to police officers for help and assistance.

I’m a white woman who grew up in a small, southern, racist town. I was cared for from the day I was born until I went to college by a beautiful, loving, black woman. From the time I was old enough to understand what was going on, I have struggled with the issue of racism. I can honestly say that in my lifetime I have never been hurt by a black person. I can’t say the same about white people.

I do not know what the answers are, but I do think we should all commit to educating ourselves about racism in our country, about human behavior and how our brains work, and about how we can, in our daily lives, do small but powerful things to change the fact that we are not all able to move about as free citizens. We are not all able to have a sense of safety in the world.

As a psychotherapist who studied child and human development, a sense of trust and safety is a basic need. We are a country of people who have not had our basic needs met. We need mass healing.

We must all figure out how we can assist with this. We must begin with ourselves.