The last couple of weeks have been an incredible test of the American psyche. While race inequality has been a part of the United States since before its inception, the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis by a police officer in broad daylight was truly the last straw for so many of us. The protests and organized movements over the last couple of weeks have shown us the resilience of so many, standing up against the grain, eager for their voices to be heard.
Alpine Parrot was founded with the mission to encourage and celebrate underrepresented people in the outdoors, namely Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color and people of size. That mission hasn't changed and will not change - lots of companies are trying to make up for lost time and focus right now; making the outdoors more inclusive has always been AP's focus.
Last week, Alpine Parrot's social media was focused on sharing and supporting the voices of the Black Community. For those of you who don't follow Alpine Parrot on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, I've compiled a couple of the messages that were shared below.
Going forward, I have already been in the process of partnering with local and national organizations to create opportunities for folks to find joy in the outdoors. I'm doubling down on that effort, coming up with creative ways to bring more fit testers into the mix without risking a break in social distancing (there is, after all, still a pandemic, y'all). Are there specific organizations you think I should be reaching out to? Do you know of any Black, Indigenous, and other women of color who might be interested in participating in Alpine Parrot's fit testing program? Please reach out to me and share the fit tester post. Being such a young company, Alpine Parrot has the opportunity to do things correctly from the start. Thank you for your support!
Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born. - Anaïs Nin
Friends we could have had, but won't get to cherish because they were taken from us.
Say their names.
The far too many who we cannot name because they died in the shadows, without cameras or news cycles.
Black. Lives. Matter.
As a brand committed to serving Black, Indigenous, and other folks of color, I can't sit still on this. I can't be silent. This isn't the America that I want to live in. I want my friends - past, present, and future - to be able to relish nature, live their lives, and bring joy to this world without fear.
Justice is crucial. Speaking up is imperative. We are on the brink of change, but we must push to make it happen.
✊🏽 estamos unidos
If we are going to end racism and injustice, we must start with one very basic, simple understanding: Black People have as much of a right to live in our societies as anyone else.
The meaning behind this is not easy, as it requires us to break down assumptions that many of us have held for many years. For example: the assumption that the systems currently in place are meant to protect all of us equally.
For if our systems are broken, then our base assumptions are also broken. Instead of asking "What did George Floyd/Breonna Taylor/Ahmaud Arbery do wrong?" - ask "Why are the police driving into crowds of protestors?"
This kind of baseline questioning is HARD WORK. But it must be done, for the sake of our friends, family, and society at large. Begin by following hashtags representing members of the Black Community. Listen. Ask Google questions. Read books and articles about the history of Black American injustice and struggle. Talk to your community. Donate your time, talent, and/or treasure to the cause. There's so much to do, but it will be easier if we all chip in, instead of asking the oppressed to fix the systems that have oppressed them in the first place.
Be safe this week, friends. Do the work, take breaks, and spread the message. I believe in us. ✊🏽