A STATEMENT FROM BLACK BEAR BROTHERHOOD
With the consistent breaches of public trust across the United States and the ongoing dismantling of the social contract through police brutality against Black communities, including the police murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbrey, and Rayshard Brooks, the Black Bear Brotherhood (BBB) expressly joins the international chorus arguing for sweeping systemic and institutional change in community policing and continues to openly make our collective voice heard in the fight against white supremacy and structural violence against Black bodies and Black queer bodies in all forms.
As a national social collective of Black gay, bisexual, same-gender-loving, and gender-nonconforming people, the Black Bear Brotherhood stands in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement and its allies. We support both the peaceful protests and impactful uprisings being held across the world, bringing attention to these injustices and shifting corporate and governmental policies and practices throughout this country. In line with our founding principles, BBB believes when one is marginalized, we all are. We cannot speak about recent events without also acknowledging the painful truth we all daily experience as Black people in some encountered form of bias, stigma, prejudice, discrimination, or danger because of our color. As Black gay, SGL, and queer men of size, we are uniquely attuned to experiences with all of the ways violent “othering” manifests itself and harms.
Additionally, with the ongoing violent attacks and murders of our trans brothers and sisters, including Tony McDade and Iyanna Dior, most recently, we also say that ALL Black Lives Matter, including trans and gender non-binary lives among the LGBTQ+ and Black queer community. They are we. And, we as a brotherhood stand up and support our own.
Further, Black Bear Brotherhood supports a more aggressive path to police reform. We support dismantling the systemic conditions that bring harm to Black people, including defunding the police as an international “best practice” form of economic redistribution, increased community accountability, and enhanced public safety. Only through the collective voice of an intersectional, multiracial, multi-gendered community unified in strategic, unrelenting, and righteous pressure to achieve equitable justice for all can we move this country forward to a new vision unencumbered by racism, sexism, homo/trans prejudice, able-ism, size-ism, and white supremacy.
We stand with those on the frontlines and those less recognized, behind-the-scenes contributors who are no less effective in their individual and specific efforts to create social change. It takes all of us who recognize our shared humanity, walk in empathy and grace, and are willing to fight for equitable access to opportunity, basic human essentials, and justice for all to birth the nurturing, loving, and sustainable world we need.
About BBB: Founded in 2017, the Black Bear Brotherhood believes Black men loving and caring for the health, freedoms, and well being of other Black men is a revolutionary act. It is a fraternal, loving, supportive, empathetic, and compassionate act that members of this collective make a commitment to realize for one another and the communities we belong to as an explicit responsibility to our brotherhood, families, friends, and communities. BBB further believes in the centering, representation, and celebration of men of size as critical, valuable, and necessary.