Month: June 2020

Simply Good: Observing LGBT Pride and Caribbean American Heritage Month

For well over a decade, June has been home to both LGBT Pride Month and Caribbean American Heritage Month.

The Los Angeles Pride Parade celebrates its 50th anniversary this year – at a point in history that couldn’t be more timely. The parade has always taken place in June to commemorate the Stonewall Riots of 1969, an uprising that took place when Marsha P. Johnson, a black, transgender woman, and other members of the LGBTQ+ community, fought against police violence and oppression. This year’s parade organizers, who originally cancelled the event because of the COVID-19 pandemic, decided instead to march in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, bringing together two movements to engender a unified voice for a common cause – to be heard and to demand change.

This June is also the 15th annual commemoration of Caribbean American Heritage Month, a time to promote the rich culture and heritage of the Caribbean people and to honor the impact they and their descendants have made on America’s history.

We wanted to take this opportunity to recognize the history and impact of both groups of people by sending you a few articles that recognize the LGBT and Caribbean American communities and their influence on the world around us.

Diversity efforts have become formulaic over the years. Where is leadership missing the mark?

In the best cases, companies hire a diversity leader, afford the person no power or resources, and expect miracles. This knee-jerk reaction is both careless and, looking at the landscape today, makes little difference, says this D&I strategist.

Over three weeks ago, when we watched George Floyd with a knee on his neck, the video should have been shocking, appalling, angering, and many other adjectives to everyone, myself included. But yet, when countless white friends reached out to me to ask how I was feeling, my answer was simply, “I’m fine.”

Today is no different than any other day; I went to sleep Black, I woke up Black, and the day that George Floyd was killed was no different to me than last Tuesday or every other Friday. The difference is that my friends, and people around the world, finally noticed.

Nothing has changed—at least yet. And whether I put a period after “Nothing has changed” is up to us and the actions we take in the future.

Simply Good: When Things Are Neither Good Nor Simple

How do we begin?

To be honest, I can’t even wrap my head around the tragic death of George Floyd, let alone the events unfolding in its wake over the past week. Maybe, like me, many of you are feeling angry, discouraged, or even hopeless. Two weeks ago, we were unified in the battle against COVID-19, but currently, our country is once again being torn apart by the centuries-old evil of systemic racism. We are compelled by the weight of injustice, anger, and grief to respond, but how and where do we begin?

This special edition of Simply Good comes out of my own desire to answer that question. Cries for justice in the past week have come through the thousands of peaceful demonstrations that have taken place all over the world. We cannot let those cries be drowned out by distractions, subterfuge or misinformation. If we want to affect change, we have to be visible and we have to be heard.

I hope these articles encourage you during this time of unrest, that the future for our country — and our children — is not without hope. I’ve also included some suggestions and resources for those who want to do something simply good to help change the things that are simply not.

 

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