Building the we with men and women face cuts poster

BOEN – NCN Statement

(Originally published June 1, 2020)

Greetings Brothers and Sisters in the name of the Creator, our Ancestors and our children who are yet to be born!

We want to simply take a moment to let you know that we are thinking about you, praying with you, and feeling the pain of the events that are unfolding around us. We are all hurting. We all need to stop the pain. We all need to allow our medicine to heal our aching spirits. We all need to take a deep, deep, breath…

A pandemic and the failed human response to it in this country has taken more than 100,000 lives. The economic insecurity of our folks collectively has been amplified many times over with the loss of jobs, even underpaying ones.  “Essential workers” – those who clean, care for the sick, harvest and deliver food, and others – risk their health on a daily basis so the rest of us can be provided for. The continued separation of children from their families at the borders amounts to an on-going crime against humanity.

The dehumanizing, brutal, and murderous treatment of our people – whether from state-sponsored violence most recently in Minneapolis and Louisville or state-condoned violence in Georgia – are the symptoms of a crisis that is 500 years in the making. The outrage and anger that we express in peaceful protests are met with tear gas and rubber bullets. While heavily armed Trumpists harass and threaten elected officials in statehouses, we watch the law enforcement authorities exercise “restraint”.

We have eyes to see and ears to hear.

Let us be clear. The systems that were birthed by a white supremacist culture are to blame, not just the individual actors like the police officer who put his knee to the neck of George Floyd until he could not breathe.

Let us be clear. The historic and contemporary traumas which are rained down on our communities are not of our making. Though we may sometimes seem to be complicit with our own death and destruction, we are not the root cause of what afflicts us. The systems of racial injustice continue to choke the life from our communities just as surely as an unarmed man lost his life for lack of breath.

Let us be clear. This trauma, this death, this devaluing of Black and Brown lives will continue until we end it by creating new systems for feeding ourselves, clothing ourselves, housing ourselves, protecting ourselves, and healing ourselves.

Let us be clear. We have been gifted ancient medicine, ways of being, and ways of healing that is ours to access and apply. We have honest, noble, and courageous men, women, boys, and girls among us who working to create a “New Day”. We have ingenuity, innovation, and creativity to make those ancient teachings and practices resonate anew and be relevant and useful, here and now.

We can live again in peace. We can aspire to moral and spiritual well-being. We can create community with those around us. We can learn to breathe again…together.

To see the full statement, please click this link: