A note on what’s happening in the world
This year has been rough. I am creating this space despite this context but I am not trying to sugar-coat the reality of this pandemic and the infuriating violent consequences of systemic racism and inequity we are living in. Without making this about me, I just want to say that we have all lost so much – jobs, lives, maybe a collective faith in humanity – and we need to do better. And while it can be easy sometimes to see when actions are wrong, it can still be hard to know what will make it better. I’ve read a lot of perspectives from friends and others who identify as BIPOC and what they’ve shared has subverted what I may have initially thought of as a neutral response to what’s happening.
For example, posting about how x makes you feel “angry/sad/heartbroken”, which makes this about me as a white person and is not the point; posting images/videos that show graphic content, which can unintentionally reinforce the atrocities that have been and still continue to be done to BIPOC in our current world; and posting images/videos of protests that visibly show protestors’ faces, which, as shown in the Ferguson Riots, can make protestors and reporters easy targets for fatal acts of violence.
And then there’s silence – which can sometimes be tempting when you don’t know what to say. But truly that does not help, which is why I’ve added this note in the first place, even though I will never understand the weight of the experiences BIPOC have had to endure under systemic racism. All I can do is listen to and read work by BIPOC, show the world that I do believe their lives matter, sign petitions, and donate when possible (while understanding that this pandemic has meant a lot of people are not in a financial position to do so). A friend shared a very informative Twitter account by voice actor Elle Osili-Wood who has compiled so many good resources you can find on various Twitter threads she has started. Locally, some places you can also donate in Canada are in the memory of Regis Korchinski Paquet (also a petition here) to Black Lives Matter Canada , to Black Legal Action Centre (Ontario), to the Toronto Protestor Bail Fund , the Urban Alliance on Race Relations and so many more you can find online.
Environmental and sustainability education isn’t worth anything if it isn’t intersectional: we need environmental education that understands how intertwined it is with social justice. This is why I want to discuss intersectional environmentalism and ecojustice in the ESE Research section of this site moving forward. This was always part of the plan, but it’s important to note that now more than ever.
I do still want to share resources related to all aspects of ESE in our lives, from important. heavy human rights topics like racism and the pandemic, to things that are less imperative to our global health, equity and safety but still serve a small step towards bigger goals in being mindful of the environment. I know I have been relying on content creators I follow to continue with their usual programming while still acknowledging what is happening in the world. I hope that this site can bring a bit of comfort in that same way to you.