Western science has long benefited from & driven the oppression of Black people. In June 2020, Free Rads called upon scientists to support #BlackLivesMatter & the abolition of our anti-Black policing system, learn about grassroots orgs, and donate.
Thank you to everyone who donated, shared, made action pledges, or otherwise supported our Scientist Solidarity Drive! We were able to make a total of $13,064 in donations to the organizations listed below.
The educational component of our Scientist Solidarity Drive campaign lives on! Take a look:
Free Radicals believes Black liberation is necessary for a just science. We are in solidarity with comrades fighting for police and prison abolition and support all forms of protest Black communities are engaged in to defend themselves against state-sanctioned violence.
We are running this drive with four main goals in mind.
- Generate donations for organizations and funds supporting frontline activists and doing grassroots racial justice and prison/police abolitionist work.
- Call on non-Black scientists to acknowledge the systemic oppression of Black people in and by Western science, support ongoing work to dismantle systems of white supremacy, and participate as accomplices in the struggle for Black liberation.
- Educate scientists & others on how the development of Western scientific knowledge has depended on the oppression and exploitation of Black communities, land, and ways of knowing/science.
- Challenge scientists to critically reflect on the impact of their research (who benefits from it? who is harmed by it?) and take action to mobilize science for justice.
As a mostly non-Black collective, we planned this drive to do the labor of calling in non-Black scientists to contribute in meaningful ways to racial justice. We encourage non-Black folks to think about who you are centering — this isn’t a moment to pat ourselves on the back.
Over the next two weeks, we will be providing resources for folks to help us reach these four goals, including threads on a people’s history of science, spotlighting Black scientists/ways of knowing, concrete ways to take action, and more.
We remember & demand justice in the names of:
Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Jayson Negron, Sandra Bland, Aiyana Stanley-Jones, Korryn Gaines, Atatiana Jefferson, Natasha McKenna, Michael Brown, Pamela Turner, Kayla Moore, India Kager, Michelle Cusseaux, Travyon Martin, Rekia Boyd, Eric Garner, Shantel Davis, Tamir Rice, Bettie Jones, Pearlie Golden, David McAtee, Redel Jones, Alexia Christian, Miriam Carey, Akai Gurley, Amadou Diallo, Walter Scott, Alton Sterling, Samuel DuBose, Kendrec McDade & too many others.
We especially want to uplift Black women, girls, trans & gender nonconforming folks who are too often erased from conversations about police brutality. Check out inournamesnetwork.com and follow CeCe McDonald, @dreanyc123, @BYP100, @letmebrehonest, #SayHerName to learn more.
While the above are Black people killed by cops, systemic anti-Blackness has led to the death of many others. We’ve included @4THEGWORLS in our drive because Black trans folks in particular experience disproportionate rates of fatal violence, often living in precarity at the intersections of racism, transphobia, and systemic exclusion from housing, jobs, healthcare, other necessities. Many are misgendered in reports after death. Learn about + honor trans women of color lost in 2019 here: https://www.out.com/print/2019/11/20/trans-obituaries-project
The fight towards the end of global anti-Blackness has been ongoing. And we could never list all the organizations and community members who have long been working to dismantle anti-Blackness. And this moment, as with every moment of everyday, underscores the scale and gravity of anti-Black violence and how anti-Blackness permeates every facet of our lives and our work as folks involved in science.
So we do this campaign not as a be-all-end-all but as a part of a continuing effort towards the eradication of anti-Blackness.