Beyond Solidarity: Bridging the Black-Asian Divide
Thursday, May 27, 2021
2:00 - 3:30 pm PDT / 4:00 - 5:30 CDT / 5:00 - 6:30 pm EDT
The disturbing rise in anti-Asian violence during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as ongoing police violence against Black communities demonstrate the pervasive nature of both racial animosity between individuals and racial injustice at the structural level. In this Rise Up For Justice livestream conversation, Black and Asian scholars and activists discuss the opportunities and challenges of building a multi-racial justice movement that includes both communities. They’ll explore cross-group tensions as well as pathways to mutual solidarity and bridging, both of which are critical in our collective struggle against racism and white supremacy.
Cat Brooks is the executive director of the Anti Police-Terror Project. Inspired by her own lived experience, Cat Brooks has spent her life organizing to bring an end to unjust systems built into the societal status quo. Cat’s current focus is harnessing the righteous rage of the streets into tangible alternatives to militarized police departments and a violent carceral state. Alternatives like Mental Health First, that move beyond aggressively begging the state for concessions and instead, firmly root power in the hands of the People to dramatically and definitively evolve their material living conditions from that of surviving to thriving.
Tracy La is the co-founder and Executive Director of VietRISE. VietRISE is an organization that advances social and economic justice in Orange County by organizing working-class Vietnamese and immigrant communities. Tracy has been a community organizer for over eight years, working on immigrant justice, voter registration, civic engagement, and youth empowerment. She has dedicated the last three years to structurally transforming Orange County toward social justice by building leadership and infrastructure to organize Vietnamese communities in the county - the largest Vietnamese community in the world outside of Viet Nam.
Dr. Melina Abdullah is a Professor of Pan-African Studies at Cal State LA, Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles, Co-Director of Black Lives Matter Grassroots, and Mama of three children. Abdullah earned her Ph.D. from the USC in Political Science and her B.A. from Howard University in African American Studies. Abdullah has authored numerous scholarly articles and book chapters, is the creator, host, and producer of the radio program Move the Crowd and co-host and co-producer of Beautiful Struggle both on 90.7FM KPFK radio. She is a recognized expert on race, gender, class, and social movements.
Lucky Ho is the Outreach Coordinator at Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta. They are a queer non-binary second-generation Vietnamese-American and Atlanta native who is passionate about: abolishing the prison-industrial complex, birth justice, and food sovereignty. Bringing a background in public health and community advocacy, they are excited to work with their communities in fighting for liberation and dreaming of a better world for all of us.
Gerald Lenoir leads collaborative efforts with community, advocacy and faith partners across the country as the Identity and Politics Strategy Analyst for the Network for Transformative Change at the Othering & Belonging Institute. He brings together diverse voices to research, develop and promote a strategic narrative to address marginalization and structural racialization while fostering structural inclusion.