Although our nation continues to make progress on race, we have also allowed ourselves to be divided by anger, hate, and fear. E Pluribus Unum. Our founding national motto translates to “out of many, one.” It is a statement about our diversity, our connectedness, our interdependence. Although our nation continues to make progress on race, we have also allowed ourselves to be divided by anger, hate, and fear. That has come at a deep cost for all of us.
We cannot break down the barriers of race and class as a divided nation. We can only fulfill America’s promise of justice and opportunity if we are united. This work begins in the South, where we have seen the darkest side of America’s history.
E Pluribus Unum was formed in 2018 with the premise that we must confront the issue of race head-on if we are to move forward. We believe our cities and towns will only thrive if they find a way to unite around a common purpose. To better understand the ways in which systemic racism and economic inequality impacts Southerners, the E Pluribus Unum team traveled the South extensively, visiting 28 communities across 13 states. Our first report, Divided by Design: Findings from the American South, focuses on how residents experience issues of race and class in their communities. The report also identifies 15 key insights that will be used to build a more inclusive South.
Today, E Pluribus Unum is building programs and initiatives focused on cultivating and empowering courageous leaders who are advancing racial equity, changing the divisive narratives that perpetuate systemic and interpersonal racism, and championing transformative policy change. Through this work, we will create a vision for a more just, equitable, and inclusive South, setting an example for the rest of the nation. Together, we can chart a new course for the South — one that centers on racial equity and moves towards reconciliation.