In Trayvon’s Memory: Give new meaning to ‘Stand Your Ground’

16 07 2013

imageI am not Trayvon Martin. I am a white female social worker. One day after 20 years as a human service administrator, a well-respected executive  I knew approached me to apply for a senior level position in his agency.  I was so honored and excited.

I was devastated when I proudly shared the news with my husband and one of my closest friends. Without a pause, they both replied that this man only wanted to have sex with me (they did not even know him). I fought back tears both times- how could these people in my life reduce me to nothing more than breasts and vagina with no value to an organization? It made me feel less than a person. I felt very judged, profiled perhaps, as  just a female  whose worth is about sex instead of  my own professional reputation and competence. I cannot begin to imagine how Trayvon must have felt and others like him.

So what can we do about the tragic death of Trayvon? We can STAND OUR GROUND and speak out relentlessly to change laws, to change our society.  Share your thoughts  with our President, legislators, your own neighborhood watch group, etc.  Social media is a powerful tool and you can use the power of it to show politicians how of us many stand behind social change, social justice.  Let them hear your voice and always be sure to VOTE!

Here is a link to an amazing collection of posts  on a site called We Are Not Trayvon Martin where people share their similar experiences, related experiences, compassion, and more. To date there are over 800 posts featuring personal stories about the impact of racism, sexism and discrimination in their lives.  You can add your thoughts in a post on this site. http://wearenottrayvonmartin.com 

Not only can you read these powerful stories and share a link to them on your social media sites and email lists, you can share it  our politicians so they can hear the VOICE of the people.

Speak out and STAND YOUR GROUND for social justice and human rights!

Do not stop speaking out until all people are safe- until racial profiling, gender profiling, civil and human rights violations, and abuse end and we no longer need to weep.

Author: Lesa Fichte LMSW, Director of Continuing Education


Actions

Information

11 responses

17 07 2013
dorleem

Lesa,

Thanks for sharing the link to the collection of posts on the site called We Are Not Trayvon Martin. These are powerful stories…

To assist in our efforts to STAND OUR GROUND, we could read the terrific resource NASW put together titled: “Institutional Racism & The Social Work Profession: A Call to Action” http://www.naswnyc.org/associations/10740/files/InstitutionalRacism.pdf

It not only explains what institutional/structural racism is but how it is manifested in our social systems and provides some ideas for how we can work on addressing it.

I’m enjoying your new blog!

18 07 2013
ubswce

Thanks, Dorlee! I had just seen the NASW Publication and it is a great resource. I will be sure to share it with folks.

20 07 2013
Russ

I am genuinely grateful to the owner of
this web site who has shared this enormous article at at this time.

22 07 2013
ubswce

Thank you to Dorlee, Mike, Nancy, BJ, Jeff, and Russ for your comments and likes! Starting a blog is nerve-wracking and I appreciate the support!
Lesa

23 07 2013
ubswce

Here is another very powerful blog about this tragic situation. http://corporateteambuilding.wordpress.com/2013/07/20/trayvon-martin-racial-profiling/

24 07 2013
Aspiring Humanitarian, Relando Thompkins, MSW

Thank you for your honest reflection. The site url has actually changed. It dropped the tumblr extension and is now just http://wearenottrayvonmartin.com/

I’m glad I stumbled across this blog and look forward to reading more posts.

24 07 2013
ubswce

Thanks, Relando! I will update the link in the post. Blessings to you for your advocacy!

24 07 2013
Sherrill Koithan

HOW IN THE WORLD did you make the huge leap from being offered a job, to the executive just wanting “to have sex” with you, to an innocent and unarmed 17 year old being shot in Florida????? Please fill me in!!!!!

24 07 2013
ubswce

Hi Sherrill,I appreciate your honest comments. On the http://wearenottrayvonmartin.com/ site there are so many stories of people experiencing judgement, discrimination- some similar to Trayvon and some different. As i indicated, my experience was of being suddenly judged as a female body, not as a person, not as a competent social work professional, and I felt horrible- and this was done by people I love. The bottom line is that we all must advocate against racism as well as sexism and other human rights violations.My blog post was triggered by reading some of the powerful stories on the WeAreNotTrayvonMartin site.

As our MSW director Dr. Diane Elze recently stated about this type of blog post discussion on our MSW Facebook page, ” I welcome these kinds of conversations. When I think about the relationship between racism and sexism, what comes to my mind is that being an African American man in the United States is perhaps similar to being a woman in a country that perpetrates honor killings and acid attacks upon women who violate gender norms – that at any time, someone might take away your life or seriously maim you forever. I think the Trayvon Martin case once again shows how the United States is a place of serious danger for young black men and we must all take it on as our issue.”

25 05 2014
how to get a google plus account

When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and
now each time a comment is added I get three emails with the same comment.
Is there any way you can remove me from that service?

Appreciate it!

2 06 2014
UB Social Work Continuing Education

Hi Rocky,
I tried to email you but your address did not work. I was unable to fix this from my end. You may need to contact WordPress Help at https://wordpress.com/help/
Best,
Lesa

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: