Veterans for Peace stands in defense of Black lives.
White supremacy is a pillar of patriarchy, economic injustice and oppression that impacts us all. As veterans, we know it is our duty and responsibility to speak out against the continued instances and long history of police brutality disproportionate to Black people and communities of color. As we’ve seen too many times, the ability to record video and share it broadly on social media has allowed the world to witness the cruelty and disregard for human life that plays out so frequently but oftentimes goes undocumented.
We will continue to stand in defense of Black lives and take to the streets to help demand a racially just society.
We have received calls from service members looking for options, resources, advice and encouragement to deny orders to mobilize against their own communities. The message in this Open Letter from Veterans remains relevant to those being asked to mobilize against civilians in their own country. If you are active duty, you can find resources below and on the page sidebar.
We will continue the call for our military and National Guard to #StanddownForBlackLives.
To our VFP Members: The most important way you can show up and be a good ally is up to your POC organizers and VFP members in your local area. You should reach out before taking initiative in your community and establish a connection. Ask them, “How can I support you and what is the best way to meet your needs?”. Withhold from offering ideas or suggestions. It is not our place to lecture. It is not our place to make judgments. Be considerate to how they want you positioned, what you are wearing and what you do and say. Our actions can impact their success and their safety. Be conscious of any privilege you might carry based on how others perceive you.
So many members of VFP have incredible organizing experience and have been on the front lines of movements for generations. You are creative and have powerful ways that can be an asset and your wisdom and legacy has incredible value, but moments like these are times to be humble. Be helpful. Be heartful.
Listen to Black leadership and voices of color. Listen to the youth of the movement. People are in the streets because they are not being heard in other venues. The expression is critical for the world to receive their message. If you show up with an open heart you can prove it by having an open ear. Be silent so their voices can be loud.
Join the Movement: Movement for Black Lives
Toolkits & Action Guides
- Movement For Black Lives Defund the Police
- Resources and Flyers on Truth in Recruiting
- TROOPS: Stand Down for Black Lives Shareable Resources (Printable fliers, posters, graphics & more from About Face: Veterans Against War)
- Civilian Ally: A Guide to Organizing with veterans and service members (from Civilian-Solider Alliance, Iraq Veterans Against the War and War Resisters League)
- Tips on Talking to the National Guard (From GI Rights Hotline, About Face and War Resisters League)
- The Guide for COs in the Military (From Center on Conscience and War)
- Calling People in About "Violence" (From Showing Up for Racial Justice)
- Defund the Police (Guide from SURJ)
- Defund Police, Rebuild Our Communities (From Dream Defenders)
Articles & Podcasts
- Trump Wanted to Send in the Troops. Now Some Are Ready to Quit
- As Trump Threatens to Send Military Into Cities, Some GIs Refuse to Comply
- Defunding Police: What It Takes to End Police Violence
- FAQs for a Police-Free Future from MPD 150 (and you can look at the resources tab on their website for more to read!)