Say Her Name: Event looks to combat institutional racism

Joshua Schuetz
Staff Writer

Institutional racism has been part of the American political and economic system for the entirety of the nation’s history. Nowhere has that been more apparent than in the criminal justice system, wherein people of color, especially African-Americans, face horrific disparities. 

The Minnesota State University, Mankato Women’s Center is partnering with Black Motivated Women, a Registered Student Organization dedicated to discussing the issues that black women face, as well as fostering sisterhood and community. The event is will be sponsoring a showing of the documentary film, “Say Her Name, the Life and Death of Sandra Bland” on Monday, March 25.

“The purpose is to discuss the way law enforcement and ‘typical traffic stops’ are resulting in death when it involves people of color,” Elizabeth Steinborn-Gourley, the Director of the Women’s Center at MNSU, said. “Black women and men are susceptible to police brutality and we need to acknowledge it, understand it, and dismantle it.”

The documentary film was released in 2018, and it investigates the death of Sandra Bland. Bland, an African-American woman, was arrested during a traffic stop and died in custody in Texas. Her death is an example of the violence and lethality of institutional racism and was responded to with a wave of political activism dedicated to police reform and the dismantling of mass incarceration.

After the showing, there will be a discussion led by Taylor Kueng, the president of Black Motivated Women. 

The event begins at 5 p.m. and is free and open to the public. It will take place in the Women’s Center, located in CSU 218.H

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