Good afternoon, my name is Dylan Baca I am 17 years old and I am the founder and CEO of the Indigenous Peoples’ Initiative. When the tragic deaths of Aubrey Ahmad, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Dion Johnson, Rashard Brooks, and numerous others was announced to us, there struck a deep and solemn note that has resounded far and wide throughout the United States and our global community.
These tragic events are reminiscent of our nation's painful past- not only in the form of brutality and violence but also the deep rooted discrimination against people of color that can be visibly seen in our criminal justice system, our schools, and our communities.
Since these horrific events have transpired feelings of grief and anger have swept over our nation and have caused us to confront the inscrutable idea that someone's life is deemed less valuable, less worthy, and less dignified based on the color of their skin.
While laws in the United States have changed over many decades, the protections that the laws give are not adequately applied to all communities, especially those of color. No one should be fearful of their country, of their communities and of being in their own skin.
The philosophy behind my organization is to support populations that have been marginalized within the United States. As my organization moves forward we pledge to support black communities and organizations. By supporting each other and working together we will overcome any obstacle. It is in the most challenging of times and circumstances that we will learn and grow and harness our collective power to better this nation. We must see each other equally, deserving of life, liberty, respect, dignity, and the presumption of innocence. It is time for our country to live up to the ideas of equal justice and equality for all professed in our founding documents. It is time to acknowledge the past and embrace the future and it is time to hear all voices for their is nothing more lonely than feeling unheard.