I wanted to bring this encore conversation with Mothers Against Police Brutality’s Sara Mokuria in a week where so many of us have been grappling with the issue of police violence and what we can do about it.
I know many of us have been searching for some action we can take about this issue and I want to encourage you to listen to this conversation with Sara Mokuria, one of the co-founders of Mothers Against Police Brutality. She will give you insight and advocacy steps from her own experience losing her father. And then, make a donation to Mothers Against Police Brutality, an organization that is seeking change by addressing policy and building police accountability, beginning in Texas but with nationwide impact.
As you listen, I hope you’ll consider making a donation as well and I also challenge you to identify just one person who you can share this episode and this call to action with; together we can start to take steps in the direction of police accountability. Now here is my conversation with Sara Mokuria.
It’s an honor and responsibility to share this Episode #33 of the Mother’s Quest Podcast with Sara Mokuria, co-founder of Mothers Against Police Brutality. It’s the third and final in a series I recorded as part of the Women Podcasters in Solidarity Initiative and it comes to you with a call to action to get involved with this issue today.
This episode was dedicated by Collette Flanagan, the founder of Mothers Against Police Brutality, who turned her grief from the loss of her son, Clinton Allen, into fuel for change.
In her dedication, Collette reminded us of our common humanity as mothers and that an insult to one mother is an insult to all mothers. It is this knowing that caused me to record this series after I saw the heart-breaking video of Diamond Reynolds and her then four year old daughter after they witnessed the killing of Philando Castile. Philando was like a father to this little girl, was unarmed and was complying with the police officer’s requests when he was shot.
Seeing the trauma and heartbreak endured by this four year old girl, who was the same age as my son when I saw this video, became a catalyst to face the epidemic of police brutality in our country, and to begin taking action, however imperfect.
Much like Diamond Reynold’s daughter, Sara also endured trauma and heartbreak when she watched her father get shot and killed by police at her home in Dallas when she was 10 years old.
Fueled by her own experience, Sara joined Collette along with another co-founder, John Fullinwider, in creating Mother’s Against Police Brutality, as a multi-racial, multi-ethnic coalition uniting mothers nationwide to fight for civil rights, police accountability and policy reform.
Sara is a mom herself to a seven year old boy. And, in addition to her work with Mothers Against Police Brutality, she’s a sought after educator, community organizer, project manager, and facilitator, currently working as Associate Director for Leadership Initiatives with The Institute for Urban Policy Research at the University of Texas at Dallas. She has two masters degrees, has taught both high school and college at the University of Texas at Dallas and currently serves on the International Mechanism Coordinating Committee for the US Human Rights Network.
She came to the conversation with an open heart she told me, and I felt her generosity and honesty throughout as she shared how police violence changed her life forever, discussed the trauma of being black in America, how the institution of policing and the prison industrial complex contributes to that trauma, and the ways in which an investment in Mothers Against Police Brutality can change policies and systems to reduce violence and create more accountability.
As compelling was Sara’s exploration of the vision she has for our future… of vibrant communities where we invest in our young people, lean into and value our differences, and where each of us taps into our own unique magic to get us there.
We ended our conversation with a co-created prayer, a wish for ourselves as much as for all of you listening, to move into greater responsibility for this work from wherever we are, to have the courage to go to those difficult and painful places so we can create a freer future, and to take this moment right now to support this cause.
I’m doing that today by making a financial contribution to Mothers Against Police Brutality and putting my resources with the mothers, like Sara and Collette, who are closest to the problem and who can see the solution. I hope you’ll join me.
Visit http://mothersagainstpolicebrutality.org/donate/ to make a donation and reference Mother’s Quest or, if contributing on November 28th, Giving Tuesday, visit the Mother’s Quest Facebook Fundraising Page to contribute to the Giving Tuesday Campaign.
Mothers Against Police Brutality founder Collette Flanagan, whose son, Clinton Allen, was shot and killed by the Dallas Police in March of 2013.
Sara’s joyous childhood which changed forever when her father was killed by Dallas police officers when she was just 10 years old
How Sara’s mother was her fiercest advocate, even as her mother grappled with the deeply traumatic effects of her husband’s killing and the lack of support as a crime victim.
Disturbing facts about our current law enforcement policies, lack of accountability, the militarization of police, and budget allocations that favor the prison industrial complex over investments that would build a vibrant community
The New Jim Crowe and the War on Drugs and how it has played out as a war on people of color
White privilege and how to move from shame and guilt to responsibility and action
How Sara teaches her son to understand injustice, the history we don’t learn in our schools, and how tenderness, love and joy can be an act of resistance
What happened when Sara met with the officer who killed her father years later and how that shifted her perspective about what the problem really is
How women make up half of the world’s population and how we birthed the other half, therefore we are the world. And, the power of mothers to chart the direction of our families and communities.
The importance of finding your own unique magic to make a difference and why Sara keeps her heart open to welcome people to this cause when they come to it
Our prayer and invitation to you the listener
The Movie 13th, directed by Ava Duvernay
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
How the Irish Became White by Noel Ignatiev
Dallas Woman Turns Tragedy Into Conversation About Race, an article where Sara talks about the system and not police officers being the problem
Stride Toward Justice: 9 Steps to Change Policing in America – policy recommendations from Mothers Against Police Brutality
Have courageous conversation about these issues with your families during the holidays.
Get involved and informed about these issues locally. Become an advocate in your city.
Make a monetary contribution to support the mothers who are closest to the solution at Mothers Against Police Brutality. Make a donation by visiting http://mothersagainstpolicebrutality.org/donate/.
Time Sensitive Opportunity To Join Me and Nicole Lee
One of those guides, Nicole Lee and I, decided we'd like to collaborate on a four-week offering to hold space for learning, growth and solidarity through weekly zoom conversations. If you’re interested in joining, email me ASAP at firstname.lastname@example.org or comment on our live conversation today in the Mother’s Quest group and I can give you more details.
Click [here] to watch the Zoom conversation in the Mother's Quest Group.