The greatest news for me, after attending the gathering for Solidarity for Black Lives Matter at the rotary this Friday, was seeing rows and rows of young people standing together holding signs demanding the end of racism. Many of my friends, older, were also there. Two generations, decades apart, standing for the same social justice we sought in the civil rights movement of the 60’s and 70’s. Fifty years ago, a good part of a lifetime.
It saddens me that our youth are not yet free from the troubles of discrimination. I wonder if they ever will be. I know they will have to continue the struggle to find acceptance, celebration and peace with an increasingly diverse society.
It is also absolutely remarkable that the racially driven death of Floyd George has triggered protests around the world. It is an historical moment that so many countries, so many cultures join one another in a demand for justice and equality, leading humanity to a more fair and kinder world. My hope is that universal cry indicates a readiness and a will to bring about world wide equality at last, and all social and monetary benefits that will bring to humanity.
I have very much enjoyed meeting a few of the immigrants who have come to make Pepperell their community. I love to hear their stories. Some coming from Brazil; one family from North Africa. They have shared some of their cultural gifts with me. I’ve suggested to them that it would be a joy to sponsor a community cultural foods and music dinner sometime. It would so strengthen and enrich our embrace of neighbors. And I would encourage them to take a moment to share their family stories with those who came to share the table.
Thank you to the people that had the love and determination to call our townspeople forward. I hope to meet you soon and learn more about your future plans to end discrimination. Pepperell, as do all communities, need your leadership.
Photos courtesy of Matthew J. Bisbee and Samantha Tremblay