Greater Louisville Inc. The Metro Chamber of Commerce 2019 Chamber of the Year
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Media Center

January 18, 2017 3:55pm

The Case for Racial Healing

Healing the racial divide that has so polarized parts of our city and our nation will take commitment, perseverance, and a whole lot of compassion.  This divide, born out of cynicism, mistrust, and neglect, didn’t open up overnight and it won’t be closed quickly.

Closure requires us to first become closer; taking the time to understand and appreciate each other.  Suspicion andstereotyping haven’t taken us anywhere positive in the past and won’t in the future.

I urge the business leaders in Louisville to recognize the economic inequities that split our community by race, including the physical divide of Ninth Street.  This sustained inequity holds our entire city back from greater economic and civic success. It is a sticking point, and one that must not wait for another generation to solve.

We will never heal what separates us until we view ourselves as one community, both culturally and economically.  Not East or West, but one vibrant, safe, healthy, flourishing, Louisville.

It’s not possible to simply snap our fingers change our reality.  One day of racial healing will not get us there, but there is always a first day and this can be our starting point.

It is going to take daily EFFORT to understand and support each other and to create economic prosperity in parts of our city that haven’t seen it in decades. The first step is to get over the discomfort of addressing tough truths and entrenched stereotypes by listening and learning from each other.

Together, we can develop the best plan forward for our entire community.  So starting today let’s collectively decide to take the time to reach out, listen, and learn.  May we commit to that?