On Ahmaud Arbery’s Birthday, I Have A Challenge For White People Who Want To #RunWithMaud

On Ahmaud Arbery’s Birthday, I Have A Challenge For White People Who Want To #RunWithMaud


By Justin Perry

May 8, 2020

A North Carolina activist says people need to do more than talk after Georgia man’s shooting. Here’s how to “make it count.”

Sending out a challenge in particular to my white siblings who shared words on Ahmaud’s Arbery’s death.

Today is his birthday, participate in this organized walk/run of 2.23 miles, while signing petitions tied to his case, including addressing systemic failures that would have kept this quiet without public amplification.

1) WHEN you do, please be sure to create a sign that says

#IRunWithMaud or something similar that brings attention:


2) Raise the consciousness locally.

3) George Zimmerman and the McMichaels aren’t anomalies. See Chad Copley in Raleigh, 2018.

4) They live in your neighborhoods, possibly your home.

5) Ahmaud Arbery, someone’s child lives in your neighborhood, goes to school with your kid, or maybe the school you live near that you fight to avoid your kid attending.

6) Don’t look at the McMichaels as some faraway, evil alien that you can’t believe exists in 2020.

7) See the McMichaels on a continuum and ask yourself where you fall on that continuum of contributing to the death of a young black person in your neighborhood.

8) Maybe you aren’t running up on kids, engaging them and then shooting them “in self-defense” when they try to protect themselves, but what are you doing?

9) You moving into “turning” neighborhoods looking to “flip” them? See, code for move out the non-desirables for the more desirables.

10) You calling the police on the people who you don’t think belong who just happen to have darker skin?

11) How about on Nextdoor? How do you show up there? Fan the flames on “suspicious-looking” Black folks who’ve probably lived in the neighborhood longer than you?

12) Ahmaud is our brother, our son, our cousin, etc. He. Is. Us.

So here’s the deal:

I’m glad that his death has inspired folks to speak up.

13) I’m going to challenge you to let it be the first step and to take the next step in channeling sadness and disbelief into addressing the McMichael in you, your family, and neighborhood.

14) There’s not a neutral gear. Are you on the accelerator or the brakes?

15) You’re walking/running either way today:

How do you make it really count?

(Editor’s Note: This post originally published Thursday evening on Justin Perry’s Facebook page.)


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