Race forum sparks a need for change in the Low Country

BLUFFTON, S.C. – “What I would really like is for us to have a testimony,” Dot Law, one of the panel members, said. “We’re in a church come back with a testimony about what did you do to create your little own beloved community.”

That’s what this forum at the Campbell Chapel A.M.E. Church in Bluffton was all about.

“We felt it was necessary to have a conversation to see if we couldn’t lower the temperature,” Law said.

The League of Women Voters put together a panel made up of pastors and community leaders to discuss racial issues.

They say it’s because of how our society is today.

“Every 10 year segment we’re influenced by different people whether it’s a school, society, media, just anything,” Will Brink, one of the community members, said.

Influences that define each other as whites, blacks, latinos and any other race.

“We are one race, human,” Pamela Brandon, a Beaufort community activist, said. “So we should treat each other with civility, respect, kindness, outreach and uplifting each other.”

To the point that skin color doesn’t matter.

“I have so many friends on my street that don’t look like me, but as I said earlier we like each other, we talk to each other and therefore I don’t see color,” Law said.

Or maybe even take different steps of coming together as one.

“Bringing up wages that would in turn will trickle to a more social, cultural, economic and just all-in-all unity to bring the race together,” Brandon said.

By listening and learning everyone realized the need to keep the conversation going.

“The one thing I have learned is that we’re each going to have to be an ambassador,” Law said. “You can’t wait for your neighbors, you can’t wait for your friends. You are going to have to step out of your comfort zone and interact with somebody that doesn’t look like you or maybe somebody who doesn’t think like you.”

Organizers tell News 3 since they had such a great turnout they plan to have another forum on race relations in the near future.

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