We wrote our Giving Friday post for this week last Friday, 72 hours before police shot and killed Daunte Wright.
Our Pollyanna hearts continue to struggle with the disconnect—even though the killing of a Black human in those intervening hours is statistically likely: in the first 8 months of 2020, police killed 164 Black people, one human life taken every 1.8 days—we seem to always find ourselves shocked and horrified when the news breaks of another precious light snuffed. We can't keep just being "shocked" and "horrified" by these atrocities. It is disingenuous to be shocked by something that occurs with damning regularity and to allow, from the deep privilege and personal safety of our Whiteness, the feeling of horror to drift from our gentle hearts once any particular tragedy passes out of the collective media consciousness. That is not our human contract of care.
We're figuring out what else to do but, in the meantime, if you can, please join us in donating to the NAACP legal defense fund. In addition to our usual weekly giving (details below!), we will match all community donations made this week up to $1,000—all you have to do is make a donation here and forward your receipt, with subject line "donation", to [email protected].
And now, for Foundry Giving Friday:
Every Friday The Foundry Home Goods donates 5% of our total sales to a different community-nominated small-and-mighty cause. This Friday's Foundry Giving Friday recipient? The George Floyd Global Memorial.
We, like everyone worth a damn, have been having lots of big feelings about the Derek Chauvin trial happening right now—feelings that ache, heavy in our very bones. As if we can't all see the truth with our own eyes, as if there is any possible "evidence" to present other than the patently obvious, as if "everyone* deserves a fair trial under the law" doesn't absolutely require the asterisk *unless you are the victim, unless you are Black. We are filled simultaneously with a righteous anger, an impotent despair that this is even up for discussion, and—perhaps most dismal—the unshakeable knowledge that all of this is completely unsurprising.
It's hard to pinpoint what horrific irony in the morass of horrific ironies surrounding the trial is the most galling, but, in talking last week with our dear friend (and electrically generous human and beautiful writer) G.E., he hit on something that really illuminated a central tension for us: the nature of "care".
At The Foundry so much of what we do, are, and value is about care. The things we carry are thoughtfully and sustainably made with care. Our Foundry Family works together in a network of mutual respect and care. The families we hold dear are in our loving care. We care for plants. For our elders. For the environment. For Ruby. But most central to everything we do, are, and value is this: we care about and for our human community, for health, safety, security, beauty, joy, and justice for all. Care, for all.
As we follow along with the trial, we hear D. Chauvin's lawyer use the word "care" to describe the then-policeman’s treatment of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. An argument is made that the mood of the concerned citizens, surrounding the crime-in-progress—those begging for succor on behalf of simple shared humanity—"interfered with the officer's 'care'"?? Egregious and preposterous. Suffice to say: it is hard to imagine any definition of care that would include Mr. Chauvin's actions.
As we read G.E.'s aching and resonant Places Journal piece about the deep interconnectivity of care centered around the community-made-space at 38th and Chicago we are struck, again, by the paradox of Care (read it, it is so good). This is a made space, where a fluid memorial has been organically constructed and thoughtfully, lovingly maintained by a self-organizing network of caretakers. It is a space for art and mourning, sustenance (literal and spiritual) and safety, grieving and gathering, resources and resistance. It is a space reclaimed, born of—and nourished by—care.
As G.E. says: This level of care in public space is surprising, but I think it might also be familiar. It might be the kind of care we know from our families — blood, adopted, or imagined. The kind of care we can practice providing to our families — blood, adopted, and imagined.
On this Giving Friday, we join in this practice of Care. Support is Care. Healing is Care. Art is Care. Health is Care. Justice is Care. Violence is not Care. Murder is not Care.
There is some amount of feeling "who are we to speak to this? a SHOP!? what business of it is ours?" But. Who are we not to speak to this? Let us use all our voices to condemn, let us all use our voices to uplift, let us all help make the invisible visible. Let us all Care.
If you don't need anything from us, consider donating to the George Floyd Global Memorial directly. If you do find yourself in need of any soul-healing sundries, know that your purchase goes to supporting deep care at the community level.
Thank you, as always, to G.E. for the nomination and for your deep generosity in connecting these dots. We are honored to hold and be held in kinship together—blood, adopted, and imagined.
Take care of yourselves and take care of each other. If you want to talk, don't hesitate to drop us a line at [email protected]. If you have a cause to nominate for our Foundry Giving Friday initiative, head on over to our Nomination Page. We're all in this together.