Anyone who has ever had a cold knows that treating its symptoms can make you feel better, but it doesn’t actually cure the cold. Fortunately, a cold generally goes away on its own, eventually.
All too often, though, we try to address racism the same way, treating its symptoms instead of its causes. However, Lindsay Dudick, Marketing and Fund Development Manager at River’s Edge, and Sarah Widener, the organization’s Program Manager, argue that this approach will fail because “unless we find the chronic ailment underlying these symptoms, we will just find new symptoms popping up. “
Their need to treat the “chronic ailment” of racism led them to the work of Dr. Vincent Lloyd from Villanova University. They were inspired, they note, by his focus on “how we treat the root of racism and Antiblackness.”
Believing that the root of racism must be approached and treated through “challenging our own beliefs and assumptions and connecting to the love that connects us all,” Dudick and Widener invite you to attend Dr. Lloyd’s talk, “Black Lives Matter: A Love Story with Vincent Lloyd,” at River’s Edge on Saturday, October 12. His program, they say, “will challenge our ideas and share new ways of thinking about the world.”
Dr. Lloyd’s work clearly aligns with the mission at River’s Edge, where they believe “that everything and everyone are connected. If one of us is hurting, we are all hurting. When we dehumanize others, we dehumanize ourselves.”
The speaker series offered at River’s Edge has at its center the intention “to bring wholeness and healing both to the ways we think about the world and to the ways we act in it,” Dudick and Widener explain.
Why is Lloyd the right speaker for Cleveland at this time? Dudick and Widener cite statistics about disparities in Cleveland, adding, “Black Clevelanders in our community are not afforded the same opportunities and resources as White Clevelanders. Our neighbors are suffering, and we can work together to make sure that our neighbors are supported. We believe that this event is one step towards that goal.”
“Black Lives Matter: A Love Story with Vincent Lloyd” is also sponsored by the NAACP and is presented in partnership with The Congregation of St. Joseph and Sisters of Charity Ministry Foundation, thus giving River’s Edge “the opportunity to partner with new, more diverse organizations and communities in this important work and to continue to take steps toward reaching a broader audience.”
For Dudick and Widener, that opportunity is vital: “Through community, we can hold each other accountable to living out of this new understanding. And through partnership, we are empowered to act for change.”
Explaining that the event will begin promptly at 9:00 a.m. and conclude at 11:30, the organizers add that River’s Edge will provide free parking and morning coffee. WISH Cleveland readers are also eligible for a $10 discount: use the code WISH when you call 216-688-1111 to register.