Beloved is a multi-media and arts driven campaign poised to deliver us four phases spanning 12-weeks beginning in February 2022. Each phase explores gun violence in-depth beginning with identifying The Problem of gun violence as a symptom of illness (or infection) caused by systemic inequality. Beloved will also explore The History of gun violence by exposing root causes and exploring local and national data trends. The Solutions to end gun violence will discuss King County Public Health’s regional approach to gun violence prevention and treatments. Beloved will conclude by exploring the ideation of a world without gun violence, The Beloved Community.
King County is experiencing a significant increase in youth and community-based gun violence and homicide. Growing up in a community racked by violence harms social and emotional health and deters positive educational and economic outcomes within. This exposure leads to life-long consequences and contributes to intergenerational trauma creating a legacy disenfranchisement. Communities will never thrive in these conditions.
The ongoing systemic oppression of Black, Indigenous, and other people of color compounds poverty and creates legacies of intergenerational trauma that leaves their communities forced to coexist in survival mode. In theory, communities have “immune systems” that become compromised by systemic inequality and forces the necessary creation of “street economies” and a proliferation of violence in order to survive. Gun violence is a symptom of inequality.
When we think of violence as a public health issue, we acknowledge that there is a cure. We deserve resources that serve our unique needs, including community-led public safety, robust health and wellness support, access to opportunity, and agency to determine the solutions for ourselves.
Through a partnership between the community, Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Hope Corps program, and King County's Public Health team, the Beloved campaign taps local creative talent to bring into focus the systemic causes of community-based gun violence and amplify the voices of those working on treatments and prevention.