To the Editor:
I urge Easton residents to vote YES on Tuesday to adopt the Easton Resolution on Racism and Public Health. While our town has many good and kind people, we are still impacted by systemic racism that produces implicit racial bias. Many of us might find it hard to imagine, for example, that a neighbor would call the police on a Black man for checking his mailbox, although there are stories in our community and surrounding communities of this very event taking place.
Or, we may take for granted that our children will go into their school library and find books with characters who look like them and share similar lived experiences. Or, we don’t think twice when we are pulled over by a police officer, because we don’t fear for our life. And, we are probably never subject to and may not “see” the many microaggressions that our Black and brown neighbors experience on a daily basis that increase their stress level and impact their health.
This is exactly why systemic racism is detrimental to public health; it actually hides in plain sight and, if we aren’t listening and looking closely, we can easily deny its existence. For this reason, I urge you to vote YES to the Easton Resolution on Racism and Public Health.