Two weeks ago today, we witnessed the shocking video out of Minneapolis of the murder of a black man by a white police officer. The images of George Floyd’s death along with stories from bystanders have spread far and wide. This tragic event became the catalyst for protests across the entire country, including peaceful demonstrations here in Brookfield this past Saturday and Sunday.
It is our belief that as a community, we must speak up and denounce racism. We must come together and take meaningful actions to make changes in our community, our state and our country towards the goal of racial justice and equality.
We are proud that Brookfield is made up of people of different races, ethnicities, religious beliefs, and orientations. We are made up of businesses and organizations of all sizes and purposes. We celebrate these differences and believe that diversity is our strength.
But in our community, like communities all across our country, it is clear that there is work to be done in addressing racism. We ask you to join us to help build bridges rather than tearing them down.
We don’t have all of the answers for you today. But it is our hope that in the coming weeks and months, through planning, organizing and community engagement, we will collectively find ways to make this a more just place to live, work and play for those who have been discriminated against in big and small ways.
We are fortunate in Brookfield to have police officers who are professional, caring and connected to our community. We’ve had open and honest discussions with our Chief over the last couple of weeks. It is clear to us that the department shares our firm belief that everyone deserves to feel safe in our village and not be the victim of prejudice or bias. No one should walk or drive down the street and fear for their safety simply because of the color of their skin.
For everyone who has become overwhelmed, please keep this in mind: racism is insidious. It manifests itself in many ways. The bottom line is we need to do better. We can do better. We will do better. This is our opportunity to listen to those who are trying so hard to be heard. This is our opportunity to learn lessons from our country’s past and to do better in the future when it comes to dealing with this issue.
As your Village leaders, we ask that you all join us to address racism and discrimination in our community. We ask that you stand together and work with us to reach our common goal of equity for all.