by Jackie Christner, First Congregational Core Team Member
Although JONAH’s annual celebration on October 10 and the accompanying silent auction were
held virtually for the second year, they were well attended ((50 tickets sold) resulting in some
needed extra funds (auction, $2000; tickets, $1000) as well as in some very inspirational and
celebratory reports from our six task forces (Affordable Housing, Chippewa Valley Transit
Alliance, Child Poverty, Criminal Justice Reform, Environmental, and Immigration). So much
progress has been made in these areas, but so much more remains to be done!
Our guest speaker Nanette Massey of Buffalo, NY, led us in important discussion of how to talk
about race, especially in recognizing “white fragility” and moving beyond that. Her comments
often refer to the book White Fragility by Robin D’Angelo, which explores what happens when
white people’s assumptions about race are challenged and how that dynamic perpetuates racial
inequality. (Some of us had been in a previous discussion with her on that book.) She shared
that many people wanting to do inner-personal work on antiracism often get stuck on the
language and labels, and she suggested instead to use her tips for what works, look for unity
and keep cool heads while recognizing our historic disregard for people who are not white. She
urged participants to correspond with her with their e-mails and to visit her website
We ended with an invitation to visit www.jonahjustice.org/aboutus to read the virtual version of our JONAH Yearbook 2021-22. You will find the task force reports there and so much more.
Hard copies will be available soon.
If you were unable to attend the event, you can watch the full 2 hour video on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2hL6B2MBuMEklHW0RK1e-g (or visit YouTube and search for “JONAH Justice”).