“Our separate struggles are really one” Read a 1966 telegraph from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to Cesar Chavez. These very words stood profoundly for the unity oppressed communities needed in such a dark time. Decades later we find ourselves in times that continue to test our humanity, desperate for unity and change once again.
Families are being torn apart and innocent children are dying.
This piece was an ode to the unity the Black and Latino community should continue grow in such dire times.
The front depicts Dr. King with the very message he sent Chavez, calling for their unity, expressing the similar fight their communities were both facing, one for freedom and humanity.
The back of this piece is a new take on the signs that covered the windows of various 1960 establishments. A sign that once dehumanized so many of those in our community, and continued to draw the inhumane lines that defined segregation, now represents the dismantlement of that very bigotry.
DREAMERS ONLY. NO BIGOTRY ALLOWED.
This is a message to the undocumented community that you are welcome. This is your home.
We are all immigrants, and we are all equal.
No bigotry will be tolerated.
WE ALL DESERVE A SEAT AT THE TABLE.
Nearly 60 years ago 4 college students took a stand by taking a seat at a Woolworth diner.
A seat that for so long was reserved only for those deemed to be worthy of it by white America.
On that February day those young individuals sat down for a meal at a whites only Woolworth lunch diner. Despite being refused service due to the color of their skin, these young individuals refused to leave their seats.
Amidst humiliation and abuse, they sat peacefully, taking the seat their families and communities had for long been denied.
This lit a fire in the Civil Rights era that would help bring the hope and fight the Black Community, and all of America needed.
In the days and months to come, it inspired a number of sit ins and protests, as well as the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his own fight for civil justice.
The times have certainly changed, but the fight continues for social equality and humanity.
Nearly 70 years from that moment, the bigotry and racism that for so long dehumanized the black communities, lives in various other forms.
Killing innocent children.
Denying humans a meal.
We must understand the power we have to make a difference.
The Sit In Hoodie represents the light that Joseph McNeil, Izell Blair, Franklin McCain, and David Richmond sparked on February 1, 1960.
The diner floors they walked over, to take a stand for their families and community, are embodied on the sleeves.
To remind ourselves.
We are all human.
We all deserve a meal.
We all deserve a seat at the table.
This collection is a letter thanking Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for everything he did.
To remind him that his life and fight was not in vain. For reminding us and the rest of the world that we must always stand up for what is right, no matter how difficult it may be. For reminding us that in times of social trial we must come together and stand for one another.
We are all human.
We all deserve justice.
So help us God.
Proceeds from this collection will be donated to the Black Lives Matter Movement.