Racism against Blacks began in America in 1619 when the first African slaves were brought to Jamestown. It must end. Right now we are all horrified by the brutal killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Jacob Blake and many others. Local protests demonstrate how many people care about this.

Unfortunately, racism is embedded in many laws and customs. Even laws and policies that were designed to be equitable are not always implemented equitably and fairly.  Racism in California isn’t just against Blacks. I urge you to read Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen by Jose Vargas. He describes the experience of being undocumented in Mountain View where he grew up.

Fighting racial inequality was a major theme of my youth. Growing up in Richmond, VA, the capital of the Confederacy, I saw discrimination against Blacks every day. I was proud to help integrate my Girl Scout camp and later my high school. We believed that integrating schools would have wide-ranging positive impacts that would end racism. Sadly, that was not the case.  We can not put off tackling this challenging national issue any longer. Now is the time to come together to understand the impact of systemic racism and make the changes to eliminate it.