The RISE team finds ourselves overwhelmed with grief after the attack in Charleston. We also recognize and mourn the individuals lost, the people they leave behind, and the potential not yet fully realized. Beyond that grief lies a recognition that this, though, is not one event, but one in centuries-long series of hate-based attacks motivated by the insidious and all-too-prevalent ideology of white supremacy. It serves as a poignant reminder that we exist in a society where white supremacist violence is routine. We must begin to recognize the system of privilege and oppression on which our society is built, and the underlying myths and lies of white supremacy that are so commonplace in our schools, homes, and the media. We know that Black lives matter, even if other lives are valued more by the system in which we live. Events like this remind us of how important it is to commit ourselves to real, meaningful research and activism to work for social justice and equity in our communities and our nation.
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