Today, my publisher issued the following statement:
Like many of you, we were horrified by the murders of George Floyd and far too many others, as well as the brutal and unnecessary militaristic response of the police to peaceful protests. We condemn those actions in the strongest possible way, and recognize that we all have a lot of work to do to combat systemic racism. We stand with the protesters and pledge to examine the ways in which we can work to dismantle racism within our organization and our community. As a bare minimum starting point, we wanted to remind our BIPOC siblings that though we are closed for general submissions, we have been and will continue to be open to submissions from BIPOC authors all year around, and would love the opportunity to elevate more of your voices.Presses Renaissance Press, Facebook page
The events of this past week reminded me that I should blatantly state the following:
Any racist, hateful, and/or abusive comments on this website or on any of my social media accounts will not be tolerated. Hate speech toward any marginalized group will result in my yeeting the offender into banishment. I know how to block people, and I’m ready to roll.
There’s no excuse for racism and bigotry in any of its forms. We can do way better. We have to. Things cannot continue as they have been.
And fellow Canadians, we can’t be smug at this time. Racism exists here, too. Denying that fact has resulted in Black folks, Indigenous folks, and people of colour losing their lives.
It’s time we listen to the lived experiences of others. Talking over people’s voices is supremely uncool. We miss vital information when we refuse to believe people.
Let’s strive to offer safer spaces. Be kind, reach out, support, donate, and boost the voices of the BIPOC citizens of this planet.
Think of what we can achieve if we create a world where we take each other seriously and act in love and support. (Without expecting to be patted on the back for it.)
Let’s take a stand and be anti-racist and anti-hate.
Looking to explore some awesome titles? Check out this Black Lives Matter book list from the Ottawa Public Library! And remember, it’s also Pride month, so here’s another OPL book list of LGBTQ+ creatives. If you cannot find these titles (or others you’re seeking) at your local libraries, then contact the librarians and make a request. It’s one of the ways you can offer support!
Cait Gordon is a disability advocate who wants everyone to pummel that curve!
She’s also the author of Life in the ’Cosm and The Stealth Lovers. When Cait’s not writing, she’s editing manuscripts and running The Spoonie Authors Network, a blog whose contributors manage disabilities and/or chronic conditions. She also teamed up with Kohenet Talia C. Johnson to co-edit the Nothing Without Us anthology (now a 2020 Prix Aurora Award nominee) in an attempt to take over the world.