Seventeen LGBT organizations are among the first to sign onto a letter demonstrating support for the family of Michael Brown, the unarmed Black teenager who was shot to death by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, on Saturday.
Noting that "all movements of equality are deeply connected," and lamenting that "there is something profoundly wrong in our country," the Human Rights Campaign and 16 other LGBT organizations have jointly signed a letter expressing support for the family of Michael Brown.
Brown was an 18-year old college-bound student who was gunned down by a police officer on Saturday, in Ferguson, Missouri. He was unarmed and was shot multiple times. Some reports state his hands were in the air when he was shot. Attorney General Eric Holder has announced the federal government will be investigating the shooting. Police have refused to release the name of the officer. Local law enforcement claim Brown was shot while attempting to grab a police officer's gun, but witnesses dispute the claim.
Here's the full text of the letter, via HRC. We'll update this report with the names of any additional organizations as they sign on.
August 12, 2014
When communities experience fear, harassment and brutality simply because of who they are or how they look, we are failing as a nation. In light of the recent events in Missouri, it is clearer than ever that there is something profoundly wrong in our country.
The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community cannot be silent at this moment, because LGBT people come from all races, creeds, faiths and backgrounds, and because all movements of equality are deeply connected. We are all part of the fabric of this nation and the promise of liberty and justice for all is yet to be fulfilled.
The LGBT community stands with the family of Michael Brown, who was gunned down in Ferguson, Missouri. We stand with the mothers and fathers of young Black men and women who fear for the safety of their children each time they leave their homes. We call on the national and local media to be responsible and steadfast in their coverage of this story and others like it--racialized killings that have marred this nation since the beginning of its history. We call on policy makers on all levels of American government not to shrink from action, and we are deeply grateful to Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice for their immediate commitment to a thorough investigation.
At this moment, we are inspired by the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies ... but the silence of our friends.”
Center for Black Equity, Inc.
Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD)
Human Rights Campaign
National Black Justice Coalition
National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR)
National Center for Transgender Equality
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
National Minority AIDS Council
National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA) PFLAG National
Pride at Work, AFL-CIO
Southerners on New Ground (SONG)
Image of Michael Brown via Instagram