We are all grieving the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery and so many others. We are deeply concerned about the historic and continuing mistreatment of African Americans. We understand grief and we understand protest. Philadelphia OIC was born of protest. Protest has resulted in significant and on-going change in America. Protest, however, is not violence. The violence and looting that has descended upon our City is not protest. The images splashed over the national media of looting, burning and violence are not us.
We understand the anger and feeling of hopelessness. Now is the time to harness that anger to create effective and permanent change. Change occurs when we take control of our lives.
No matter how justifiably angry and hurt one is, there is no right to destroy or deface property. Reverend Dr. Leon Sullivan, the founder of OIC walked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. peacefully during the height of the civil rights movement to protest for equality. They used civil disobedience to force concessions and create change. Protest works. Violence and looting do not. Violence muddles our message and distracts from the power of our collective voice and our message.
We have and can make a difference without violence.
Philadelphia OIC stands with you to advocate for equality and fairness for all people.
Judge Renée Cardwell Hughes
President & CEO
Philadelphia OIC is a workforce development organization which works to eradicate poverty through education and job training.