On May 25, 2020, George Floyd was murdered in handcuffs, lying face down, and begging the officers for his life. George was an African-American man who was killed by Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer accompanied by three other officers: Tou Thao, Alexander Keung, and Thomas Lane. Alongside the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, Pi Delta Psi extends our deepest condolences to all who are affected by the countless injustices that our African American colleagues, friends, and family members have continued to face. We stand in solidarity amongst our friends in the African American community as we find these incidents to be a horrendous lapse in justice and human rights.
During a time of anger and confusion, we understand the issues at hand are extremely sensitive. We understand that when one speaks on the conditions of life, we speak only from our experience and because of that, it is difficult to represent all bodies of different views. However, in recent weeks, there is indisputable proof of a discussion needing to be had; an attempt to build a connection and a bridge to facilitate ideas for the different bodies that make up America.
Pi Delta Psi recognizes the shared vulnerability and the call to action in response to violence and racism. We see the unstable structures of privileges that make life livable for the few whether it is based off political, racial, or ethnic differences. Regardless of our own individual beliefs, our fraternity brought brothers together from similar adversity struggling to succeed in America. We witnessed the hardships and discrimination of the system that we still witness today. But despite it all, we understood amid the confusion and suffering, the need to stand tall next to each other. Side by side, being able to reevaluate and improve upon our flaws and limitations with each other. The trials and tribulations we face collectively while dealing with our own problems give us the determination and tenacity to thrive in the face of calamity. To make the impossible, possible.
As an organization whose mission is to embody excellence (with a pillar dedicated to Cultural Awareness), Pi Delta Psi condemns any and all acts of racism and those who willfully believe in such. As leaders, it is our duty to educate future members on the importance of nullifying anti-blackness sentiment that has plagued this country for as long as it has existed. For as long as they have carried the burden for us in the past, it is more important now than ever to stand alongside them as well.
In times where racism rears its face, we must all join in strength to stand for what is right and fight to protect one another from its reach. Pi Delta Psi urges support from our brothers to take action against racism and its rhetoric, as we see neutrality to be a form of oppression. Though faced with adversity, when united together there is no adversity we cannot overcome.
Pi Delta Psi would like to stand by with the Black Lives Matter movement. We must join and demand the for what this movement calls for: a livable life. We must remember and remain vigilant in ensuring righteousness for all. It is not about a conformity of all nonwhite groups. It was never about them versus us. Our message never changed. It has always been about valuing all life and finding our place in humanity because they — whoever they are — are all of us.
We do not call for violence, but we do call for action. In order to create ripples that will influence the tides of change, listed are some of the actions you can take provided by the National APIDA Panhellenic Association (NAPA):
- Learn to recognize and understand your own privilege, and examine your own biases.
- Validate the experiences and feelings of Black lives.
- Avoid racist language and call it out when you see or hear it (i.e. microaggressions, stereotyping, and derogatory language such as the N-word.
- Vocalize your support for the Black community and share their stories.
- Educate yourself and others about colorism (discrimination based on skin color).
- Support the Black Lives Matter movement, pro-Black progress, and Black organizations.
- Get involved in your company or school’s works or local campaigns to expand opportunities for Black lives.
- Avoid appropriating a culture that is not yours.
- Have an open and honest discussion with children, family members, or others about racism.
- Read books or articles on racial inequality, social injustice, and history of Anti-Black racism.
- Reach out to local, county, state, and government representatives to voice your concerns.