#DoSomething: Understanding Race, History, and Why You Need to Be an Ally

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#DoSomething: Understanding Race, History, and Why You Need to Be an Ally

On July 22, 2020, in News

On Friday July 17th, the BAC community gathered on Zoom for an important conversation around race, history, and the importance of being an ally. The discussion was led by guest speaker LeRon Barton, an accomplished author and speaker on race, mass incarceration, and social justice.

Over the nearly three hour discussion, Barton led the 2020 membership, staff, board members, and select DCI leadership through the history of racism in America, beginning with colonial slavery. Barton continued on through the Civil Rights movement and to today, covering the recent and unjust murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery and the Black Lives Matter movement. Attendees were invited to ask questions and provide commentary throughout the evening, sparking in-depth conversation around unconscious bias and how to be an ally in both a drum corps setting and everyday life.

Check out a snippet of the discussion in the clip below, where Barton explains how to be an ally.

As an activity largely composed of future music educators, it is important to recognize our responsibility to shape the future. The DCI member of today is the music teacher of tomorrow. If the lessons learned on the rehearsal field today are reflected when the members eventually stand on the podium of their future classrooms, we can ensure a more diverse and inclusive future for all levels of musicians. Even for the large portion of members who are pursuing a career outside of the arts, these discussions serve the same purpose of change and inclusivity, no matter their industry or title.

Thank you to LeRon Barton for spending his Friday evening discussing these important topics and to Dan Acheson, CEO of Drum Corps International for joining us! While there is still more work to be done, we believe this is an important first step in creating not only a better community, but also a better world both on and off the field.