Will #blacklivesmatter change Burlington?

Earlier this week, Mayor Marianne Meed Ward made an announcement about unveiling a new Black Lives Matter street mural. It is scheduled to stay up until Sept 13. I went down yesterday to take a look. I found it to be a rather unassuming piece of art. Perhaps that was the point.

I wanted to take a look at it, as earlier that week I had interviewed some of the organizers of the Burlington Black Lives Matter solidarity march that had inspired it’s creation. I encourage you to listen to the podcast episode. You can do so by going to The905er.

As well while you’re there, I suggest you subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts so you’ll never miss an episode.

The next generation is not apathetic. There is a strong need for change for the better. To make our community more inclusive and tighter together for people of all walks of life. In the interview, Ms. Mallon refers to plans to discuss with the police as well as the Mayor methods to make Burlington better. More equitable and accessible to it’s citizens.

Their goals are ambitious. They are also worthwhile. It is refreshing to see the stereotype of the slacker millennial is not alive with these young people. It would be wise for all of us to listen to what they have to say. The next generation wants a seat at the table. They want a say in how our community develops and grows. Their ideas are worth listening too. I trust that our Mayor and elected officials will make room for them.

Real systemic change takes time and effort, but it is worth it. It will make our community a better place to live. If we ignore them, then all our talk and bluster will amount to just being a coat of paint on the sidewalk.

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