Embracing Faith Through Advocacy: International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

By Katie Beckmann Mahon, Communications Manager


This week’s “Embracing Faith” article will focus on Embracing Faith through Advocacy.

“Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; God delivers them in times of trouble.” -Psalm 41:1 Saturday was supposed to be a day where people all over the world came together to observe International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and discuss ways to improve their efforts in eliminating all forms of racial discrimination. The 2020 focus of International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination was the review of International Decade for People of African Descent, an initiative undertaken by the Human Rights Council in Geneva. (1) This initiative aims to raise awareness about the millions of people of African descent and their limited access to quality education, health services, housing, social security, low political participation, as well as the discrimination they encounter based on age, sex, language, religion, political opinion, social origin, property, disability, birth, and other statuses. (1) Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination events were canceled, but the conversation about racism has drastically increased and shifted towards the current treatment of Asians. Last week, there were multiple reports of hate crimes against Asians in London and New York City. During one of the incidents, a victim reported that his perpetrator said, “I don’t want your coronavirus in my country” as he was attacked. (2) As COVID-19 spreads, so will fear, and these incidents will only get worse. During these troubling times, it is important to advocate for those who are being discriminated against, regardless of the situation. Proverbs 31:8-9 tells us to “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” Now, more than ever, is the time to follow those words and come together for the greater good of our world.

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