Alicia Garza — the co-founder of Black Lives Matter — is set to come to campus on May 9. She will be the keynote speaker at the Radical Voices event, co-sponsored by Student Media, Engaging Education, UC Santa Cruz’s Campus Sustainability Council, Afrikan/Black Student Alliance (A/BSA), Student Union Governance Board and Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanx de Aztlán (MEChA).
Garza isn’t new to Santa Cruz. She was the speaker at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. convocation in February 2016, where nearly 400 people turned out to hear her speak.
“We want everybody to be free. But in order to get there, we have to acknowledge that freedom does not yet exist,” Garza said to the crowd.
In this evolving political and campus climate, Alicia Garza will take the stage next Tuesday to address the Radical Voices theme — politics, identity and the media. Last year, Radical Voices brought Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah, a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and Kiran Gandhi, a feminist activist and musician, to UCSC.
This year’s event will focus on dismantling narratives crafted by mainstream media of underrepresented groups and building solidarity across communities to defy these.
Tiffany Loftin, a UCSC alumna, former commissioner for President Obama and current program coordinator for Civil, Human and Women’s Rights at the American Civil Liberties Union, will facilitate the Q&A and discussion portion of the event.
“We’re going to walk away with more tools in our toolbox on how to defeat white supremacy,” Loftin said. “Both spiritually and individually and collectively, and how we do that through a non anti-blackness lens — solidarity and action.”