As news of the shootings in Atlanta fills the airwaves, I want to take this time to recognize the fear and pain many Asian Americans in our community may be experiencing. While the motivation of the shooter in this incident is under investigation, it points to a larger issue of increased violence toward Asians and Asian Americans. Anti-Asian sentiment, racism and xenophobia are all not new to the U.S.
Many of our campus-wide conversations have centered around the Black and LatinX experiences. As a campus, I want to call on us to ensure our equity conversations include working to eradicate racism in all its forms.
At Madera Community College, we have an unwavering commitment to equity and anti-racism. From the SCCCD Chancellor’s Cabinet and Board of Trustees anti-racism resolutions to the work of our own students, faculty and staff, this commitment runs deep. It can be seen in how we live out our mission, vision and values on a daily basis. How we question our practices and processes. How we listen for understanding of different perspectives.
A new staff member asked me recently if we are free to disagree with different parts of the conversations happening in, for example, our reading of Kendi’s book. My answer was yes, of course. I don’t agree with everything Kendi writes myself. While we may bring a wide variety of lived experiences, theories, and solutions to the conversation, one thing is certain: our commitment to anti-racism is unapologetic. It’s our stake in the ground.
As we continue our work nurturing a culture of equity-mindedness and anti-racism, let’s keep pushing ourselves. How can we support people who may be experiencing racism in different ways such as our Asian American students and colleagues?
The work of college-wide and district-wide anti-racism is long overdue, and I am proud to be working alongside you. Thank you for everything you do day in and day out to support each other, our students and community.