In the weeks since George Floyd was murdered brutally by police, we’ve witnessed the faultline of racism crack open across the country and the world with a force many of us have never seen in our lifetimes. Protests that started in the name of Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery have given way to demands to defund police, change the way we memorialize history, and reinvest in Black communities.
Many of us have marched, donated, and educated or been educated. Yet when the protests wane and streets empty, what do we do? How can we continue to raise the banner of affirming the value of Black life?
Today, on Juneteenth, we’re asking you to keep raising that banner by re-committing to helping us build a liberated community on the westside of Detroit. A community that protects itself. A community in control of its own future. A community of people who have been agitated and awakened and empowered. An organized community.
Since its inception, DREAM has bridged cultures. We’ve connected Muslims from urban and suburban communities, descendants of those enslaved and descendants of immigrants. We’ve tied our Black Muslim community even closer to the folks living around us in our 90%-Black neighborhood. And we’ve tied our faith community to movements for racial and social justice in Detroit. Why? Because we have a moral imperative to oppose oppression, to fight racism, and to do the work of supporting our neighbors—the people we’re in community with.
DREAM’s staff, interns, and volunteer leaders have been busy over the past few weeks. We’ve spoken to hundreds of people in the metro Detroit area about racism and this moment of change that we’re all experiencing together. But we’ve also continued the daily work of rebuilding our neighborhood—moving a new family in just last weekend, repairing damaged homes, relocating our office to make space for more residents, and deepening our work with partners.
We’ve worked before and through this moment because we know full well that when the mass outrage fades, the media finds a new focus, and we’re all absorbed by our own problems again, the work for real liberation still continues. We hope that when that time comes, you’ll still be right here working with us to get free.
May all our hearts turn toward justice and may you be blessed with well-being in this time and always,
The Dream of Detroit team
P.S. Here’s a look at some of the programs we’ve been involved in over the last few weeks and a quote from one of our volunteer leaders in the Ann Arbor News: