Introducing The Skillman Visionary Awards

Tyre is the latest victim not of bad apples, but rotten trees

Many of us made choices this weekend about how to handle the news, video, and heartbreak around the death of Tyre Nichols, 29, the latest brutal murder of a Black man at the hands of police.
There is no right way to process this. There is no right way to make sense of this cruelty.

You will hear many things as people discuss this latest incident, including dwelling on what it means that the officers were Black.

I want to lift something. This “revelation” underscores the fact that racism isn’t owned by one race. The true impact of racism is that everyone internalizes its messages. At a young age, we learn that there is a racial hierarchy, that Black and Brown people are treated by every single system as less human, less deserving, not to be trusted, not to be given our voice, our humanity.

Photo of Tyre Nichols, 29 years old.

While we will sometimes see moments of White supremacists blatantly harming Black and Brown people, the work we do every day at The Skillman Foundation is to combat the racism that is the default operating system in our country, constantly humming in the background. In our policies and practices, our notions of expertise, our ideas of who is deserving and who is worthy, of who should be in the room and who should be inviting people to the table. This underpins our work, our why. This is behind our vision of reinvented education systems. This is driving our desire for the reinvention of philanthropy.

There are multiracial, multicultural battalions who daily enforce brutally racist systems.

Tyre is the latest victim not of bad apples, but rotten trees.

We will mourn. And then, we will rise again.  

We need everyone in this movement. We need multiracial, multicultural allyship to redesign equitable and just systems. To better this for today and to end this for tomorrow.

Thank you for standing with us.


Angelique Power

Angelique Power is the president and CEO of The Skillman Foundation.

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