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Transparent Statement:
Racism may be less explicit, but structural racism is still a huge issue.

I cannot think of anything smarter for a privileged white male to do than start a conversation on racism. But seriously, as a white male, I acknowledge that I will never truly understand racism (or even sexism).

The law already addresses overt racism, although I am sure racist practices still exists. But there are many policies that, either by accident or by design, disproportionately impact communities of color.

Taxes — Our tax structure of relying on sales tax is the most regressive in the nation. This has a bigger impacts on low-income workers, of which communities of color represent a larger percentage.

Education — It is no secret that K12 education is under-funded and that schools in wealthier communities receive more funding than those in communities of color. This is a crime and must change. Every child deserves the right to a quality education, regardless of income, race or zip code.

Crime — It is difficult to ignore the statistics where poor and colored defendants have a higher conviction rate than wealthy and white defendants. This is a difficult issue to address, but the first step is simply acknowledging it.

Drugs — Drug laws seem to be enforced more intensively against communities of color, including different sentences for similar crimes.

Police Enforcement — There are too many instances of seemingly unwarranted police brutality, particularly against Black people. I have a lot of respect for police officers, who choose to put their lives on the line every day. It is undoubtedly a stressful and difficult job. Any person who runs or resists arrest is making the officer choose to make split-second decisions about their own safety and that of others. That is a recipe for disaster for all involved.

I believe that each instance of suspected brutality must be considered on its own merits. To impugn all police officers and every instance of violence is wrong and unfair. To not punish true instances of excessive violence is not only illegal and immoral, it is a disservice to those police officers that perform their job professionally day in and day out.

Black Lives Matter:

As an aside, I want to address the Black Lives Matter movement. While I do not always agree with their tactics and sometimes disagree that certain instances they cite are truly racist, I admit I can never truly understand their reality. In that sense, I empathize with their concerns and applaud their efforts to raise awareness. It is easy to dismiss their message based on our own perception of reality, but that would be naive. If these problems did not truly still exist, they would not feel the need to raise awareness.

Steve Rubenstein for Governor | Privacy Policy