We have been reading and watching what’s been going on in the US and around the world a great deal today and have something to say about it. We hope you don’t mind. If you do, maybe that’s good as it is good to get out of your own echo chamber sometimes. Maybe we are guilty of this too, but in this case, we think there is no question and it is time to speak.
No longer can we stand by and do nothing while our leaders and governments fail to address long-standing issues of police brutality, limited punishments for murder, and social injustice of all types in the US. Very few of our leaders are responding in ways we would hope for, namely proposing plans to address the underlying issues. Instead, they just reinforce the expectation of more force, more brutality and propose extreme measures like martial law. We are far more impressed by the Officers and Leaders who are taking a knee or speaking out about corruption and racial profiling. It is clear that there needs to be an independent oversight function for police, not run by Politicians or Police Unions, but by the People the police are intended to serve. We need to have a national conversation about Race in America. We do NOT need more violence or leaders that fight protests with more violent responses like tear gas and hate speech. It is time to stand up for real change.
Where to start?
We were inspired by this site https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/ that empowers visitors get involved in many ways right now.
Why would MedStartr take a position on this?
Several reasons: First and foremost, it is the right thing to do. Next, we have a voice and we should use it. What does an artist like Billie Eilish have to do with this? No more or less than we do, but she is leading the way – at the tender age of 18. As a platform with a voice and an audience, we see it as our responsibility to raise awareness and call people to action, not just to improve healthcare, but in other important social and global issues too. To NOT do so now would be just as bad a standing and watching while someone was being mistreated or killed as happened for George Floyd and so many others. We are only powerless if we do not act.
How Can We, as a Community, Help? Well, here are a few ideas. We are open to more. Please be welcome to join the conversation out on social media with us or email or call us to discuss.
Ask the MedStartr community for help
First and foremost, thank you to all the healthcare workers: Nurses, Doctors, Medical Facility Staff, Hospital Administrators and people of all stripes that are navigating riots and will deal with the COVID Spikes that will likely result. It has been an insane year and it isn’t getting any less so. Keep up the good fight and if you need anything we can help with, please do not hesitate to ask. The MedStartr Community is global and broad and we can help a lot if we put our minds to it. Just email us or call and we can figure out how to help our 85,000+ member community to work, helping in many creative ways. There isn’t much we can’t do when we put our minds to it!
Show Gratitude and Support for the Bravest
Please express your appreciation to the Fire, Police, and Safety professionals that ARE doing the right thing every day. The ones taking a knee and walking with protesters, the ones pointing out their racial profiling training, the ones standing up to corruption and brutality, the ones that are ending their long silences – these are the men and women that need our support the most. Even if it is just a “like” on Facebook, it matters. We have a moment, not unlike the #MeToo movement, where these long-ignored or likely-to-be-killed-for-speaking-out voices will have a chance to be heard and protected more. We need to amplify and support these brave souls that now have an opportunity to get rid of the bad actors in their midst. Every cop will tell you that this is a real issue that they face and in many precincts and cities, even whole states and countries, the bad cops are in power. Right now is a chance to change that balance. We don’t know the hashtag for this yet, but watch for it and tell us when it emerges.
Support Oversight Legislation
We all know that absolute power corrupts absolutely and police are no different. Without independent oversight of police, this problem will never go away. There needs to be oversight, not more of the same, where corrupt cops, politicians, and union leaders have control. Legislation to this effect is being prepared and will need support. Find it in your area and do what needs to be done to get it passed.
Help Take Out the Bad Actors Online and Off
Don’t let bad actors take over the conversation or give the protests a bad name. This will just give the current administration an excuse to declare Martial Law, suspend elections, and who knows what else. We were inspired when we saw a crowd prevent the willful destruction of property by someone who did not look like any other protestors (an agent provocateur they say.) A group of citizens merely removed the man’s tools from his hands, picked him up and delivered him to the police. For Police who try to say that “a few bad apples are making them look bad”, they can learn a lesson from how the protestors are handling their bad apple removal. No, it isn’t easy, but we all can do it. This also applies to people spreading statements like “All Lives Matter” that minimize what it is to be non-white or female in America. Saying “All Lives” rather than “Black Lives” is like saying we need to fix all arms before we set a broken arm right in front of us.
Be Loud, Not Proud
Silence is no longer an option. It is time to do something and say something, but it doesn’t have to be perfect, it just needs to be in the right direction. For a better to-do list than what we have noted, please go to https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/ to DO SOMETHING. We all have a part to play. You may not want to go march in the streets, but there is much to be done that is not that. Every little but counts (just like in a MedStartr campaign.) Through our crowds and our collective voice, we can affect great change!
And while we are tempted to finish with a statement inspired by another entertainer, Seth Rogan, that “if you disagree please unsubscribe. There are links for that below.” The truth is that we believe that this is an important inclusive conversation and all parties should stay. Police reform and fighting inequality are not simple and won’t just be solved by one side alone. What we need now is a conversation, action committees, leadership and support to get that done. We don’t want another movement to suffer from a lack of leadership follow through and widespread support while the majority is silent (think Occupy Wall Street for example.) This needs to be fixed now.
Since we first posted this last night over 1200 members of our community have read this post and hundreds have clicked on the BLM links. Yes, we have seen a higher unsubscribe rate than usual and even got some negative responses that were more vocal, but we are pleased to report that ten times the number of positive comments came in as negative. Thank you for your support and please leave a comment if you would like to join the conversation.