This post should really be called “Bianca’s Thug Tears” because that’s what I experience when I “check in” to see how many folks have taken the survey thus far.
When we started I had thought “if we could get 30 folks by the end of
May that would be fantastic!” By Tuesday evening almost 25 folks had
participated. Then I thought “Ok, maybe 50 is a good number to hope for
by the end of May.”
Today, 5 days into sharing the survey, almost 50 Afr@Latin@s have
taken the survey! This is incredible! I think of all of the valuable
time each of you shared in taking the survey, sharing it, and linking
back to the survey so others can see and partake and am so overwhelmed
by thanks and gratitude. This is also a reminder that we are in need
and desiring these conversations that include all of us; all parts of
who we are; and that these are not occurring at this time. This reminder
also brings me to tears: How have we been excluded for so long when we
were here all along?!
We have only posted this on three spaces: tumblr, Twitter, and
Facebook. I have yet to even send this out as an email to folks in my
address book or to the listserves that I know about and where folks may
be interested. As I think of how this number may grow, my adoration for
Afr@Latin@s grows as well; the awareness of what needs to be done
expands. I realize the urgency of this work.
I also recognize some of the “flaws” with this work: the survey is
only online and there are more of us who may not be; the survey is
currently only in English and we speak so many other languages; the
survey asks only a few short questions; some of the definitions may not
be clear, or may be too rigid. I take sole and complete responsibility
for all of these (and the others that may arise). My hope is that folks
recognize that the urgency, for me, was to acquire this information to
begin to build and create what we need collectively. The urgency is in
our ability to share, speak, and create and we have a challenge with the
rates at which we are being hurt, harmed, murdered, deported,
incarcerated, isolated, and erased. I am determined to begin this now
and take all responsibility for any flaws as they come.
As part of the “next steps” we (Tasasha the “intern” who is working
with me) are still keeping our July 2013 date to share publicly (while
maintaining the identit(ies) of folks who participated as confidential)
the findings in the most accessible way. I’d love if someone who
believes their translation skills from English to another language
Afr@Latin@s speak is strong to help with translation, reach out to
possibly help us translate the survey and findings!
Please know this is an unpaid project. Tasasha and I are NOT getting
paid for any of the effort or work. This work is not funded by any
source. It is as independent and grassroots as it gets! What is being
offered in exchange for help and support: strong recommendation letters
and references, skills around this work, mentorship, and citation
I’ll soon be sharing my vision of a communal citation so those who
have participated can receive a publishing credit when the findings are
shared. Please be on the look out for that post. If you took the survey
and shared an email address you will receive this in your inbox when it
is available. Others may look online to where this information will be
shared and archived.
So many thanks to each of you and to Tasasha for all of your help and
work and time and sharing of your needs. I see you and I witness our
collective evolution and struggle, and I thank you for seeing me and
witnessing my evolution too.