On June 13th, in the year 2005, the United State Congress formally apologized for failing to pass any of the pre-existing 200 anti-lynching bills introduced from 1882 to 1968. Not even one anti-lynching bill was passed. For obvious reasons, I find this mind-boggling and disgraceful, to say the least.
But let’s take a moment to expand our collective consciousness. I entreaty you to pull back your personal lens to create a wide-angle view of the landscape in which we live. Now imagine yourself on the lesser, marginalized side of the ongoing conversation surrounding civil rights, equity, and fair inclusion for all people. That is a dark and exhausting way to exist. It is disempowering. It is demeaning. It is demoralizing. It is disheartening…
The kind of deep, dark, lonely space that can lead to thoughts of suicide is not exclusive to any one group of people or about any one exclusive thing. However, there is a way forward out of the darkness of despair caused by inequity. Balanced and fair inclusion is the way to “carve a tunnel of hope through the dark mountain of disappointment.” (MLK quote)
The need for equitable inclusion is undeniable. Leadership within the arts sector is the perfect platform to shape destiny by utilizing the arts as a platform to work intentionally against the obstacle of structural racism. Urban Arts Leadership by GBCA fosters the development of emerging leaders to strengthen the values of equity and inclusion in the cultural sector.
by Kibibi Ajanku