First, I hope this finds you safe and well.
Change is the aspiration of all great art and there is no greater work of art worthy of transformation than this beautiful and broken country of ours. In our collective grief it is easy to lose faith. Thankfully, a dose of my 20-year-old daughter and her cohort’s relentless activism in pursuit of social justice turns my despair to hope and purpose again. I was also heartened by the peaceful and purposeful student-led protest in the Mission on Wednesday, and by the deeply brilliant strategic leaders featured within President Obama’s virtual town hall. At one point, we were reminded of Dr. Cornel West’s words.
“Justice is what love looks like in public…”
I know many of you are working diligently to elevate your engagement towards making that vision of Justice a reality through active protest, discourse with your representatives, and mobilization of your communities. At Magic, we are mobilizing to fulfill our obligation as anti-racists – to dismantle the systemic racism that implicitly bleeds through our homes, our workplaces, and sometimes even, our art – and how we can hold ourselves (and each other) accountable. This fight for racial justice is one black organizers have expertly led for decades. It’s a practice we must ALL come to with humility and persistence each and every day.
The day we released this would have been Breonna Taylor’s 27th birthday. Breonna was an EMT and an emergency room technician. She was also a daughter, granddaughter, sister, and a niece. In honor of Breonna and the hundreds of thousands of Black bodies that have been terrorized by white supremacy since the genesis of this country, Magic has put together a special edition of our podcast during which we will #SayTheirNames.
We invite you to hear, to see, and to pay tribute to the person behind each of those names. We have left room for you to say their names in a call and response fashion, or to write down unfamiliar names so you might learn more about them. We owe a debt of gratitude to Kimberlé Crenshaw, The African American Policy Forum, and The Black Lives Matter network for this movement. Playwright Aleshea Harris also offers some meaningful rituals here: What To Send Up On Your Own.
Let this move you, but work diligently to transform your emotions into tangible action. As artists, we are nothing if not catalysts for change.
Loretta and the entire Magic staff
Finally, we are again sharing a list of resources you can call on below. We’ve included some additional organizations who are working mightily to ensure our right to vote in November is upheld without suppression.
Black Visions Collective
Black Trans Advocacy Coalition
Reclaim the Block
Communities United Against Police Brutality
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
Showing Up for Racial Justice
Black Movement Law Project
Black and Brown Founders
Black Voters Matter
Life Comes From It
We want to thank Magic family members Steven Anthony Jones, Leigh Rondon-Davis, Rod Gnapp, Safiya Fredericks, Sarah Nina Hayon, Adrian Roberts, Rinabeth Apostol, and Sara Huddleston for their generous contributions to this podcast.We want to thank Magic family members Steven Anthony Jones, Leigh Rondon-Davis, Rod Gnapp, Safiya Fredericks, Sarah Nina Hayon, Adrian Roberts, Rinabeth Apostol, and Sara Huddleston for their generous contributions to this podcast.