The Central New York Poor People’s Campaign hopes to highlight contemporary injustice and discrimination by looking back on 400 years of history. The 1619 Project will hold open discussions on the lasting effects of slavery on Sunday.
Organizer Reverend Beth DuBois says our society was built on a system of inequality that influences all people. She says change comes from historically privileged groups taking responsibility of their actions.
“If really want to be serious about becoming a society that’s based on equality and gives everybody a chance to develop their gifts. Then we have to recognize our part in continuing the patterns of discrimination, and I don’t think that we have as a society or church frankly, really, really done that.” said DuBois.
DuBois says people will be more willing once they understand how prejudices affect our lives today, citing Syracuse’s own issues with poverty and segregation as an example. Fellow organizer Reverend Marcus Jackson hopes the conversations are educational and make people angry enough to take action. He did express concerns over the divide between younger and older activists.
“They look at us as adults or their leaders, and they say ‘look we sat here for 20-30 years. We watched you all, we’ve heard you all, and we haven’t seen any change. So what’s the point of even getting involved, and risking my job, or risking my friends.’ ” said Jackson.
The 1619 Project will take place this Sunday from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Hopps Memorial Church on South State Street.