The concept of race was invented by white European colonialists to use skin color as a justification to enslave and exploit darker skinned people and their resources to gross enormous profits for themselves throughout the world. Slavery and racism have been used from the beginning of the history of the United States to imprison, torture, exploit, lynch, and murder millions of African slaves, African-Americans, and other People of Color. They were brought to these shores, bought to work on plantations, confined to urban ghettos, and are now being subjected to such police violence and prison warehousing that words like genocide appear to be accurate descriptions of their plight.

In 2015 the UUA General Assembly, recognizing this situation, passed a resolution supporting the Black Lives Matter movement. The people in Black Lives Matter are working for a world where phrases like “intentionally being targeted for demise” will no longer apply to Black lives. Our congregation supports the Black Lives Matter movement, and our members are currently introspectively examining our own racism. We are also working with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) to confront situations where Black and other People of Color communities in our area are being discriminated against or otherwise oppressed.

Our congregation also condemns the violence and oppression that has been suffered upon the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT+) community by homophobic elements in our society. One must look no further than the mass killings in Orlando, FL, to realize that the hard won progress being made by the LGBT+ community in such areas as marital equality still exists within a violent environment characterized by mass murder. Our UUCT Social Justice Team has provided leadership to Druid City Pride, the largest and foremost organization in the Tuscaloosa-West Alabama area advocating for the rights of LGBT+ persons. Descriptions of our work with the aforementioned civil rights and human rights organizations in our area are presented in the links associated with this topic.