In light of the recent murders in Atlanta, which targeted persons of Asian descent, the SSME Board wishes to make a statement explicitly condemning hate speech and violence against Asian Americans. In the last year the U.S. has witnessed broader patterns of discrimination and violence against Asian Americans, and an estimated 3,800 incidents have been reported. Racism and xenophobia poison the well of our democracy and our shared life together. Moreover, it’s important to note that many of the victims of last Tuesday’s shootings were women; misogyny and racism too frequently go together. We call for justice for the victims’ families and stand more broadly in solidarity with our neighbors of Asian descent. The SSME continues to be guided by principles of justice and accountability, working to support scholarship and activism that addresses and dismantles racist and misogynist thinking and social structures.
The Board of the SSME expresses outrage and grief at the murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arberry, David McAtee, George Floyd, and countless others who are victims of police brutality, especially Black Americans. Moreover, we affirm the dignity of persons and communities who have been harmed and continue to be harmed by the pernicious violence of a defunct criminal justice system, but also by disparities in healthcare—a reality particularly apparent in the COVID-19 pandemic. We condemn the ideology of White supremacy that undercuts efforts at social reform, and too frequently manifests in a dangerous complicity with the status quo. We express our solidarity with all victims of systemic racism and colonialism, and commit to working towards the eradication of all such forms of injustice in our collective scholarship and activism. Within our organization and beyond it, we seek to foster communities centered on justice, accountability, and a critical awareness of the relationship between present injustices and histories of domination and exploitation.
In the coming weeks and months, we will be identifying actions to take as an organization to address racial injustice. Additionally, we recognize the work necessary for unlearning racism. Here are some resources we will be using, and recommend that others consult:
#BlackIslamSyllabus – link here
Muslim ARC (Anti-Racism Collaborative) – http://www.muslimarc.org/
Sapelo Square (an online resource on black Muslims in the US) – https://sapelosquare.com/