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In Solidarity: Pursuit of a Just Society For All
The Museum of Tolerance (MOT) stands in support and solidarity with our Black colleagues, partners and the entire Black community. We are reeling in outrage against the senseless murder of George Floyd and against the racial violence that has claimed so many other Black lives. We feel the angst and urgency of those who are marching in the streets as an expression of pain and need. We are with you.
As James Baldwin said: “Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed that is not faced.” It is our greatest hope that this is the moment when we, as a nation, will face ourselves and grapple collectively with the systemic racism and racial violence that are deeply embedded in our history, and must be confronted in order to be overcome.
More than hoping, the Museum of Tolerance, anchored in the legacy of the Holocaust, was established to challenge us to learn the lessons of history and apply them to promote human dignity and rights for all. Our mission at its core is to be a catalyst for positive social change, a bridge for understanding and empathy, and a solutions-oriented space where dialogue leads to action. Right now, we are focused on finding the right way forward, investing care and deep thought in how we can listen, learn and best address the needs of the communities we serve. Even while the doors of the MOT are closed because of COVID-19, we are providing a platform for the voices of the people in the struggle, supporting the professionals on the front lines - including workshops and resources for educators, and training for law enforcement on building community trust- and engaging youth and the public in ways that help them find perspective, insight and inspiration in these turbulent times.
Lonnie Bunch III, 14th Secretary of the Smithsonian Institutes reminds us that museums are better suited than most to define reality and give hope. That is the MOT’s commitment. The time is now.
Banner Image: WE THE PEOPLE, an interactive exhibit in the MOT telling the story of this country through three themes - the diversity of people that shapes the nation, the oppressions that must be recognized to be overcome, and the ongoing pursuit of a just society for all.