Family, friends, followers, and new visitors. The turmoil which beset the world, the nation, our communities and households in March has buried us in what feels like a tsunami of confusion, fear and grief. The deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, followed by the brutal murder of George Floyd unleashed centuries of festered pain, grief and rage which has consumed us beyond the comprehension of many whose experience as Americans has not tangibly intersected with the generations of systemic racism suffered by people of color, especially African Americans. Organizations all over are posting statements– condemning racism, condemning violence, declaring support or opposition. And as even those of us in the deepest grief over these events lack the words to express this emotional turmoil, no statement is adequate to address what we are experiencing.
I do no not know if in our living memory, we have ever experienced a deeper chasm in our nation. We’ve known the disconnect and the divide was there. Racism has been lurking through our society in different forms– in our systems. In our ideologies. In our relationships. Some of us have seen it plainly every day of our lives and to others, it sounds like a rancid myth. In this moment, it seems we are utterly saturated in its residue, shouting in the darkness from our respective rooms in this reality. As I think of dear friends in the same pain with no idea how we could possibly comfort one another and others I love who cannot understand it, my heart aches from this seemingly insurmountable barrier of humankind’s basest nature which separates me from these loved ones. We want to shout, but who would hear?
So we sing.
Friends, there is no moment more critical than this that we commit ourselves to embracing this tension with #RealTalk. Since the culmination of our last series and research project, HALO has been working diligently to build upon new community connections to plan an extended series to really deepen into the work. With the risks of the pandemic, we then quickly began to regroup to organize for our first virtual platform for Race and #RealTalk: Sharing Spaces. We have seen the change that a commitment to learning, building relationships, and sharing stories can create in us and the time has clearly come to share this with people around the country. So we ask your contributions and support to help us create the safe space for healing, which we have seen the music of barbershop can teach us to do. Stand with us. Sing with us.
Coming Fall 2020:
Race and #RealTalk- Sharing Spaces
Details soon- please donate here: paypal.com/us/fundraiser/charity/2728016