A coalition of major national LGBT rights groups is standing with the family of Michael Brown, the African American teenager who was shot in the back and killed by a police officer in Missouri.
The group issued the following open letter last night:
When communities experience fear, harassment and brutality simply because of who they are or how they look, we are failing as a nation. In light of the recent events in Missouri, it is clearer than ever that there is something profoundly wrong in our country.
The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community cannot be silent at this moment, because LGBT people come from all races, creeds, faiths and backgrounds, and because all movements of equality are deeply connected. We are all part of the fabric of this nation and the promise of liberty and justice for all is yet to be fulfilled.
The LGBT community stands with the family of Michael Brown, who was gunned down in Ferguson, Missouri. We stand with the mothers and fathers of young Black men and women who fear for the safety of their children each time they leave their homes. We call on the national and local media to be responsible and steadfast in their coverage of this story and others like it--racialized killings that have marred this nation since the beginning of its history. We call on policy makers on all levels of American government not to shrink from action, and we are deeply grateful to Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice for their immediate commitment to a thorough investigation.
At this moment, we are inspired by the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: "In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies ... but the silence of our friends."
The following organizations signed the letter: the American Civil Liberties Union; AIDS United; Center for Black Equity, Inc.; Courage Campaign; Equality Federation; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; GLAAD; GMHC; Human Rights Campaign; National Black Justice Coalition; National Center for Lesbian Rights; National Center for Transgender Equality; National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; National Minority AIDS Council; National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance; PFLAG National; Pride at Work; Soulforce; Southerners on New Ground; Trans People of Color Coalition; Transgender Law Center; and the Trevor Project.
It's great to see LGBT groups coming together and speaking out against injustice.
UPDATE, 8/19/14: Many more LGBT organizations have signed on to the letter since this post was initially published. Click here for the full list.