Just so we're clear on where I stand and what will and won't be tolerated in this space here: Black Lives Matter and the whole police and justice system is trash and needs a massive overhaul. The system is inherently racist.
Given current events I've seen this now leaking into the horse community, something I'm very thankful for. It needs more attention, especially when you look at a lot of the casual trail riding communities and find abhorrent racism, or at the very least, people who insist that they don't see color and that's satisfactory. Enough so that myself, a very privileged white person, just had to mute it all because trying to speak up meant I was drowned in a sea of voices scorning me. I can't even imagine how a person of color would feel. (But seriously, don't join Horse Trails and Camping across the USA. Terrible)
Denny made a post about this (and is getting swarmed with hurt white people who apparently feel attacked), but yesterday I saw a few things that I wanted to share as they are horsey and they are relevant to the present times.
First, Mica Burton (daughter of Levar Burton, and a cosplayer and gamer) recently shared a link to an organization that could use our help. This particular one is a California group that works with kids of color and gets them involved with horses and teaching them to ride.
Consider taking a fee you would have paid to a show that you're not going to because of Covid-19 and donate it to this organization, or find something similar to support. Mica specifically mentioned this:
Edited to add in Viva Carlos as a blogger to get to know. She's amazing and just made a post that has a lot of educational links you can sit with and educate yourself. One VERY important thing to know as you immerse yourself in activism for the black community. They do NOT owe you education. It takes them time and energy that they may not have because of ALLLLLL the white folx who have come before you. Do not demand that. Google is your friend. L. William's links are your friend. Sit with the information presented there and if you feel immediate defensiveness when you read something, don't react but really examine where that emotion is coming from and what implicit biases you might have. It's uncomfortable but necessary.
Additionally, seek out and follow black equestrians on Twitter and Instagram! This fabulous person, Brianna Noble brought her horse TO one of the protests. From perusing her IG, she looks like an amazing trainer and horsewoman.
Compton Jr Posse is so awesome, a couple years ago they came to the A shows in San Diego and did outreach work. People don't realize that riding and horse training has a long history in the black community, we are here, people just don't see us and I'm so happy that black equestrians are finally getting visibility.ReplyDelete
Thank you for helping to signal boost.
I should share the pictures I took at the Kentucky Horse Park (or check if I did already). They had a museum exhibit about black horsemen, and specifically jockeys, who were vital to horse racing. The thoroughbred racing industry was, like many things and I know you are likely aware, built on the backs of slaves.
And if anyone reading did not know, it's VERY important that white folks know how deeply the systemic racism runs and how much what we use and benefit from today was built on the backs of slaves.
Yeah, I don't know much about my ancestors - essentially there is just a giant hole in history from Slave ships to my great great grandparents being in TX. States did not care to keep records and when they did have records the segregationist communities burned them. So I like to imagine in my families past there were great horsemen and that their love for horses passed down to me.Delete