AKA Reverses Stance On Letter Wearing During Police Brutality Protests
This whole week we’ve been discussing Black Sororities’ response to the #dontshoot, #BlackLivesMatter, police brutality protesting. Initially, we thought it was a chapter directive instructing members not to wear their Greek letters while protesting protests. Eventually, someone confirmed that the entire National organization of both Alpha Kappa Alpha and Delta Sigma Theta were discouraging members from wearing letters.
As a member of the community these organizations vowed to serve, I expressed that the directive seemed counterproductive. Other members of both AKA and DST were in agreement. In response to what I believe was a productive discussion across various websites and social media platforms, the sorority reversed its stance on letter wearing.
You can read the statement from the sorority’s National President Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson:
“We expect our members to be actively involved in solving the social justice issues raised by those cases. The immediate response throughout the country has been to protest, march, and/or rally. We strongly support and encourage our members’ peaceful and lawful participation in these activities and as such, we issued guidelines for participation in these events.
We do not want to be distracted from our mission of fighting for justice and equality for Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Dontre Hamilton, and the countless other young black men across the country victimized by a criminal justice system that places little value in their lives. However, it appears the request to refrain from wearing the sorority’s letters has become a distraction and a distortion of the sorority’s position on these issues that is diverting attention and effort away from the broader fight to secure social justice and reform.
We are therefore relaxing our original position on the wearing of Alpha Kappa Alpha paraphernalia and attire.”
Some are debating whether or not this decision was political, not really representing the sorority’s original or true intentions. I really don’t think it matters at this point. It takes more courage to acknowledge and correct a wrong than it does to keep catching flack for it and remain silent. So props to the AKAs.
What do you think about their decision to reverse the no letter-wearing directive?