An Important Message
Three days ago, we woke up to this picture drawn by our youngest and displayed on his bedroom door.
It is heartbreaking to see the countless posts by BIPOC women, mothers, wives, sisters and daughters attempting to humanize their fathers, husbands, brothers, and children. We shouldn’t have to educate, teach, remind others that we and our loved ones are human beings. As parents of two young African American boys we refuse to simply trudge on and accept that it is up to them to avoid getting murdered, profiled, harassed, stereotyped, and discriminated against because their skin color makes some people uncomfortable. Mr. George Floyd’s murder has left his six-year old daughter without a father, an ally, a friend, and someone to support and protect her. While we know her mother will make an excellent job to protect and care for her, that young lady has been deprived of someone that loved her.
Regardless of political affiliations, religious beliefs, or upbringing, at this moment in time, it is imperative that we raise our voices in support of #blacklivesmatter and other organizations/movements that work toward EQUALITY.
Our support to these organizations/movements does not equate to be against any other group/organization but rather an acknowledgement that systemic discrimination exists and that we understand that these senseless deaths should have been prevented.
Even though the images of looting and theft have attempted to drown out the peaceful demonstrators protesting the murder of Mr. Floyd and the continuing, in some cases, extreme response to peaceful demonstrations, we must not forget that what is at stake is more precious and valuable than losing property and some broken glass. It is about the fight against pervasive INEQUALITY in our society and the preventable loss of life which is directly affecting our fellow BIPOC family.
If these words do not resonate with you or if you have never felt as though you’ve had to experience fear, inequality, racism, stereotyping, harassment, or discrimination of any kind based on your skin color or gender we urge you to listen to the voices clamoring not for special privilege but to simply be able to live without fear.
For all the #lys’s around the country who have ever received patronage from members of the BIPOC, LGBTQ communities and other marginalized groups, the time to simply say that “we are listening” “we are willing to learn” “we are making an effort to educate ourselves” it is no longer enough. We may not be able to change the entire world view but we must collectively raise our voices in support of organizations that are in the forefront and make clear to our other patrons with prejudiced views that we will not tolerate or continue to tolerate prejudiced views.
At Llama Llama Ding Dong Yarn, one of our first priorities was to make sure that everyone who walked through our doors would feel welcome regardless of who they were, what they looked like, or how affluent they were. Our staff was trained to greet everyone equally and to make sure that when our fiber family left our store, they would leave knowing they had the best experience. This was not accidental or a gimmick, it was a decision forged from our experiences of walking into lys’ stores and made to feel unworthy of being there by owners, staff, and other patrons.
We support the demonstrators, organizations, and overall equality, as well as, those in law enforcement that are genuinely interested, invested, and who actively work against injustice.
The world is watching, the country is watching, but most importantly our children are watching us and listening to us. To all the mothers who live in fear that their children will meet the same fate as Mr. Floyd we wish strength and fortitude to continue to raise your voices and stand up for your children.
We do not know if we will be able to weather the financial impact of the pandemic and if we will have a physical place to show you our love and appreciation but we will always have this space and you can always reach out to us here.
All of our love,
Yax & Roo
“We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Wherever men and women are persecuted because of their race, religion, or political views, that place must - at that moment - become the center of the universe.” — Elie Weisel