In the recent Herald article on the County Council’s town hall on racism, the report says the forum discussed “whether institutional racism has taken root in Snohomish County.” Taken root? White settlement here, as in all of the continent, was founded on systemic racism. The “settlers” and their armed forces stole the land, devoted themselves to the elimination of native culture, and removed children from their homes, putting them in schools chartered to make English-speaking farmers out of them.
Racism continues to be be a persistent force in our local current affairs, as evidenced by the vigilantes who recently occupied downtown Snohomish, who were welcomed by the mayor and police chief.
County Executive Dave Somers’ recommendations for criminal justice reforms, including body cams, cash bail reform, and police oversight boards are a good start. Other positive ideas on justice system changes can be found at www.8cantwait.org.