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May 14, 2015

Responding to Baltimore, From Anywhere

The recent unrest and violence in Baltimore have caused another wave of grief and soul searching in America. Freddie Gray was a 25-year-old African American man who died of injuries while in police custody. Last week, the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office filed charges against the six police officers who were involved in Gray’s arrest.

People of faith and conscience are working to help heal our communities in the wake of such tragic deaths and searching for solutions to the root causes of racism, poverty, and mistrust between law enforcement and the communities they serve.

Last week, Sam Fulwood III, Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and Director of the CAP Leadership Institute, appeared in a video that explored the roots of the violence in Baltimore. This week, he offers a reflection on where we should go from here.

“Fitting together all the jagged pieces of this puzzle isn’t impossible,” he writes. “But it will take concerted and collective actions … What’s more, it will require a cold, unflinching willingness to tackle the institutional forces that created extreme and segregated pockets of poverty in many of our nation’s city centers.”

We hope that you will watch Sam’s video, read his column, and join the larger conversation on how we can build a more just nation together. Consider responding to Sam’s request: “Please send me your thoughts about what we as citizens can do to ensure that the unrest in Baltimore was the last of its kind. This goal is mighty lofty and will require the brainpower and political muscle of broad swatches of the American polity.”

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