Religious Education & Faith Development Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains May 27, 2021
2020-2021 Religious Education (RE) theme: JUSTICE & EQUITY
Supporting our young people in understanding justice issues, articulating their values, and engaging in faith in action with CUUC Social Justice teams. Also, supporting youth in developing healthy self-esteem and relationships.
Sunday, May 30th
Rev. Meredith Garmon, “Why Remember?" 100 years have passed since the Tulsa Massacre of 1921. We remember atrocities -- even if we feel in little danger of repeating them -- for many reasons. Because there is celebration amidst the grieving: that we, as a people, have survived even this. Because the seeds that produced past wrong are ever within the human breast and must be continually recognized and not ignored. Because the honoring of the lives lost, and their accomplishments, assures evil's triumph is not final. Click here foradditional resources shared by our In the Spirit of Truth/Racial Justice Team.
Note for Parents & Caregivers
The Time for All Ages story in worship this Sunday is Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre by Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Floyd Cooper. Amy Nathan reads it for us. This picture book sensitively introduces young readers to the tragedy and concludes with a call for a better future. It is a telling of what happened in Tulsa on Black Wall Street in 1921 in a way that is appropriate for children.
There are some words you might need to explain to young children. One passage reads, “Fearing the man would be lynched - killed by a mob...” For young children who ask what “lynched” means, explaining that as hurting someone very badly or killing them is probably sufficient. There is also reference to reconciliation and terms of the time like “soda fountain,” “pool hall,” and women getting their hair “coiffed.”
In current times, when we see some states trying to limit teaching about this country’s history of slavery and the systems that were created to perpetuate ongoing oppression of people of color, it is important that we are voices of truth. For many years, many children did not learn this part of history in school. An excerpt from the NBC News story below describes the attitudes of some education officials:
"The curriculum was never designed to be anything other than white supremacist," Julian Hayter, a historian and an associate professor at the University of Richmond in Virginia, said, "and it has been very difficult to convince people that other versions of history are not only worth telling. They’re absolutely essential for us as a country to move closer to something that might reflect reconciliation but even more importantly, the truth."
Ask what questions your children have and let that lead your discussion. Approach conversations in age appropriate ways and follow your children’s lead. You might find these resources helpful:
How to De-Escalate Situations and Be a Better Bystander/Upstander
NPR Life Kit offers these resources for how to intervene when someone is harassed or attacked. The resource is presented like a graphic novel and include a recorded segment. Parents/caregivers might want to listen to the recorded segment first or read the transcript, then decide if it's appropriate for your child's age and stage.
FREE Hollaback! Bystander Intervention Resources
Knowing how to safely intervene when you see harassment is a valuable skill. Hollaback! trainings offer methodologies in the areas of bystander intervention, conflict de-escalation, harassment prevention, and resilience. We encourage you to attend their FREE online trainings, listed ontheir website. Trainings are great for all ages (your whole family can listen in together) and include Bystander Intervention 2.0: Conflict De-Escalation, How to Respond to Harassment for People Experiencing Anti-Asian/American Harassment, Bystander Intervention to Stop Anti-Asian/American Harassment and Xenophobia, Bystander Intervention to Stop Anti-Asian/American Harassment and Xenophobia, Stand Up Against Street Harassment. Visit these great resources from Hollaback!
The Southern Poverty Law Center’s (SPLC) Learning for Justice project (formerly Teaching for Tolerance) released a new short video designed to offer an age-appropriate way to talk with young people about what countering bias looks like in practice. The video, made for children, is great for all ages.
An original children’s story from author, educator and LFJ awardee Elizabeth Kleinrock, Min Jee’s Lunchwas published in the fall of 2020 in response to increased reports of racism around the coronavirus.You can watch Min Jee’s Lunch here [4:32]. Accompanying reader questions can be found here. In the story, a classmate announces that Min Jee’s Korean lunch is “how everyone got sick.” Min Jee and her friends must decide how to respond. We know young people face decisions like this every day. The organization Stop AAPI Hate recently announced that reports of hate incidents targeting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have increased dramatically this spring—including in schools. SPLC developed this short video, beautifully illustrated by Janice Chang and read by Kleinrock, to help start conversations about ways to push back against hate and speak up for what is right.
Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains
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