When Mike Brown was killed one year ago, in the midst of tears and grief we prayed with our hands up, as tempers flared and fires burned. When we saw Eric Garner die on camera, it took our breath away. When Sandy Bland died in custody, we saw the lethal consequences of racism behind bars. And when fifteen people died in houses of worship--six in Oak Creek and nine in Charleston, we were stunned that hate could drive white supremacists to spill blood even in sacred spaces.
In the last year, an eruption of moral rage has led to a rapidly growing multi-racial, multi-gendered, multi-generational, multi-faith movement for racial and economic justice. We have grieved, wept and turned our #PropheticGrief into fervent prayers and courageous action.
In Ferguson, we stood with clergy and organizers calling for repentance and renewal. We have died-in and marched from New York City to Washington, D.C. We have traveled to Charleston, Selma and Winston-Salem to stand in solidarity with our sisters and brothers. We have walked the halls of power, from Capitol Hill to the Pentagon, to demand the just treatment of all people. We have put our feet on the ground and our bodies on the line to make sure brown and black lives matter -- at the polls, in our schools, in the marketplace and on our city streets.
We are a small school of faith leaders -- Christian, Jewish, Sikh, and Muslim - channeling the hunger for justice in our many communities into a single chorus, calling for change. We are not the only ones. This movement has many leaders -- from queer Black working class women to undocumented youth and so many more. They are organizing on the ground and online, connecting our struggles, and building unlikely coalitions.
If we believe in the freedoms for which our ancestors died, we must join them. On the anniversary of the death that sparked so many to renew our commitment, together we must topple the rages of racism for people of all faiths, all colors, and all beliefs.
To join us: Go to FergusonAction.com for a list of National Demands, which include supporting the End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA). This law will prohibit the use of profiling on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin or religion by law enforcement agencies. Introduced last April by Congressman John Conyers and Senator Ben Cardin, a groundswell of support could make this law in the fall. For sample messaging for letters and phone calls to elected officials, go to NAACP.org.
Rabbi Sharon Brous -- Founding Rabbi, IKAR Los Angeles, CA
Dr. Sharon Groves -- Faith organizer and strategist working at the intersection of faith, LGBTQ equality and justice
Rev. Dr. Peter G. Heltzel -- Assoc. Professor of Systematic Theology at NYTS Director, The Micah Institute
Valarie Kaur, Esquire -- Interfaith leader, Civil rights lawyer, and filmmaker
Rabbi Stephanie Kolin -- Associate Rabbi ,Central Synagogue in NYC.
Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis -- Senior Minister, Middle Collegiate Church in NYC
Rev. Michael-Ray Mathews -- Director of Clergy Organizing at PICO .
Brian D. McLaren -- Author, speaker, activist, and networker
Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III -- Senior Pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago
Bishop Gene Robinson -- Retired Bishop, The Episcopal Church
Linda Sarsour -- Community activist and Executive Director of the Arab Arab American Association of New York.
Rev. Dr. Katharine R. Henderson -- President, Auburn Theological Seminary
Rev. John Vaughn -- Senior Vice President, Auburn Theological Seminary