USA • Los Angeles Area
The man selected by the Los Angeles Area has chosen not to accept the Award and has asked that the following be read:
It is a high honor to have been nominated for, considered for, and chosen to receive this award. Through that, I see that my contribution to advancing white male introspection around race and activation of said introspection has landed on men. However, I feel it is far more necessary to take that high honor and turn the light onto the men who have truly done the hard work, the men of color in this community. For too long, these men, willingly or not, have been holding up mirrors for us white men to do our work. More often than not, I have stood and watched these men do their work around racial inequity, while the power and privilege of my silence reigned. I have feigned helplessness in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, asking men of color ‘what should I do?.’ Our brothers of color do not get to choose whether or not race is an issue on a weekend or in I-Group or by being inundated by calls in the face of racial reckoning. Yet, they keep showing up, day after day, month after month, year after year. I am so thankful that they show up and have held the myriad of mirrors up for me and my white brothers. It is time that we white men take the mirrors from them and we hold them up to each other, for doing so should not be exceptional, it should be expected. So, thank you, my beautiful brothers of color for all you do for this Project, this community, this nation, and this world. You have changed my life and my commitment to you is I will not stay quiet and I will take action whenever I can whenever I see racial inequities. I invite my white brothers to commit to the same.