APRIL 30, 2020

Moving Towards a Measurably Different St. Louis

WEPOWER banner grey background with portrait cut outs of Black people

What are we moving towards, together? Because there is no turning back from here.

We can move towards a new way of co-existing, screaming and kicking, clinging and grasping to the toxic behaviors and beliefs that are killing Black people, OR we can choose to embrace a radically different way of being:

  • in relationship with one another 
  • in relationship with our history, our present, and our future 
  • stewards of the world our children will inherit 
  • accountable for outcomes instead of applauded for activity 
  • led by the voices, solutions, decisions, and experiences of impacted communities who are being hit way too hard by this pandemic

This past weekend, as I read an excerpt from one of my favorite thought leaders and organizers, adrienne maree brown, she offered a quote that feels so appropriate for the moment in our region, our country, and our world’s history.

“...that in the destruction of something lies a whole new world of possibility–a place where patterns can finally become unhinged and there’s space for something new to take its place. Not that this doesn’t come without loss, grief, devastation, it often does. But, to see that there’s also resilience, the beauty of survival, the move to create and thrive despite what surrounds us. To me that’s the essence of our fight for liberation.” --Spenta Kandawalla

Amidst this pandemic and as the curve appears to flatten, as loss, grief, and devastation feel less palpable for some while remaining normal for many who reside in zip codes like 63115, what do we choose to move towards beyond today? And, when we arrive, how will we know? 

I propose we move towards a measurably different St. Louis. We will know we arrived because racial equity will not be a feeling, it will be an entirely different set of outcomes that can be measured. We have everything–people, resources, the most opportune time–we need to move towards a liberated future.

We can choose to move towards a measurably different St. Louis where life expectancy isn’t 85 in zip code 63105 (Clayton) and  67 in zip code 63115 (North St. Louis City). We can choose to move towards a measurably different St. Louis where 44% of our Black children in St. Louis City no longer live in poverty compared to only 11% of White children. We can choose to move towards a measurably different St. Louis where there isn’t a dearth of quality, affordable ECE slots in North St. Louis areas like Walnut Park, the Ville, O’Fallon, and Jeff-Vander-Lou. 

We can choose to move towards #stl2039 (page 11).  

Will you join us?

We offer some ways for you to be in relationship with us as we make strategic movement towards #stl2039 this year. 

This moment calls on us to be in a real relationship with one another to actively move towards a measurably different St. Louis. Let’s get to work. 

In power and with love,

Charli