Los Angeles – In response to this week’s horrific shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, Equality California Executive Director Rick Zbur issued the following statement:
“Today, as African Americans across the country observe the 150th anniversary of the end of slavery, we’re reminded how little we’ve progressed as a society.
Words are inadequate to express the horror and grief we feel for the victims’ families, for the African American community, for the city of Charleston and for the country as a whole today. There are those who say racism is no longer an issue in this country; even before Wednesday’s shooting, a quick look at recent headlines would have revealed the hollowness of that statement.
While some are already raising voices that this was not a racially-motivated hate crime to serve a narrow and cynical agenda, make no mistake: racism is alive and thriving in America. The victims were unquestionably targeted because they were African American. And it is the responsibility of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to stand with other communities and the country as a whole in raising its voice to extinguish hatred and bigotry as American values.”
Equality California is the nation’s largest statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization dedicated to creating a fair and just society. Our mission is to achieve and maintain full and lasting equality, acceptance, and social justice for all people in our diverse LGBT communities, inside and outside of California. Our mission includes advancing the health and well-being of LGBT Californians through direct healthcare service advocacy and education. Through electoral, advocacy, education and mobilization programs, we strive to create a broad and diverse alliance of LGBT people, educators, government officials, communities of color and faith, labor, business, and social justice communities to achieve our goals. www.eqca.org