The Pelikan’s Perch has long striven to be apolitical, preferring to focus on pens and not politics. While I am not without conviction, I have never felt it appropriate to espouse my personal views on this forum. While I will continue to refrain from doing so on a regular basis, I would like to make it a point to acknowledge the exceptional pain and anger that we see bubbling over in our communities. Silence is no longer a luxury that any of us can afford. Since the earliest days of our country, people of color have long had to deal with systemic racism, whether overt, insidious or structural, as well as brutality suffered at the hands of those in positions of power. I have seen firsthand what racism looks like from the vantage of my white privilege. I grew up with it every day of my life and yet I do not hate the way I was taught to hate. I long ago made the decision to not discriminate, to not judge, and to not hate solely based upon the color of one’s skin. Despite that, I have no doubt that I have been passively complicit in furthering racism within our culture. By choosing to not see color, we marginalize and invalidate the racist experiences that those of color encounter on a daily basis, thereby contributing to the problem. I am not a perfect human being, none amongst us are. We all make mistakes and will continue to do so. We need to learn from those mistakes, to recognize that we must do better, to strive for empathy, and to never settle for complacency within ourselves for as long as people continue to be discriminated against.