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AFSC stands with Buffalo and all those suffering from racist violence

Photo: Layne Mullett / AFSC

On May 14, 10 people were killed and three were injured by a white supremacist at a grocery store in a majority Black neighborhood in Buffalo, New York. Our hearts go out to the victims, their families, and the communities in Buffalo during this time. We are holding you in the Light.

These horrifying acts of racist violence compound the ongoing trauma caused by relentless anti-Blackness espoused not only by individuals like the man who carried out this attack, but also in all sectors of the country. We are holding in the Light our staff, volunteers, and community members who are particularly impacted by these attacks and the ideology behind them, and we deepen our commitments to work for a world without racism and violence.

The suspected shooter is an 18-year-old white man whose actions were motivated by his belief in “great replacement theory,” also referred to as “white replacement theory,” a deeply racist belief that is growing in popularity and is amplified by right-wing media and political leaders. This ideology not only incites violence in the present but is used to justify and even celebrate centuries of violence. It is also intensely anti-immigrant, antisemitic, anti-Muslim, and misogynistic. We stand in community and solidarity with those also named in the manifesto reported to have been written by the killer, which targeted Muslims, Jewish communities, trans people, and immigrants. 

AFSC is committed to eliminating white supremacy and violence wherever they are found. This means being honest and accountable to our history and our present. This means we must embrace a trauma informed approach to community care; believe and support victims and survivors; and above all, make every effort to prevent such violence by eradicating its very root.