Indifferent is an adjective, defined as a lack of interest, enthusiasm or concern for something: Apathetic.

The influx of asylum seekers currently living in the Expo Center is nothing short of a humanitarian crisis. Community members are collecting strollers, diapers, underwear, shoes, books and more. Private citizens have donated $800,000 and counting.

Communities surrounding Portland have pledged tens of thousands of dollars to support asylum seekers:

Cape Elizabeth donated $10,000.

South Portland donated $40,000.

Freeport donated $0.


At the most recent town council meeting, town councilors intelligently debated donating budget surplus and whether or not that was an appropriate use of tax dollars. Historically speaking, the ‘intelligent conversation’ of privileged white men (and women) is a fickle thing that is as likely to do as much damage as good in the world. As is the case with the Freeport Town Council, who decided not to vote on whether to offer financial assistance to the families living in the Expo Center. This response to a humanitarian crisis is nothing less than apathetic (at best). Though the city offered “in-kind” resources, this offer seems entirely performative. Particularly when the town’s financial capacity allows for so much more than this pitiful offering.

The Equality Institute published a document entitled “The Pyramid of White Supremacy.” It is an easy image to find in a google search. Find it, and you’ll see that the foundations for mass murder, murder, calls for violence, discrimination, veiled racism, and minimization are: indifference.

In other words, Freeport Town Council, your “non vote,” your apathy, your indifference, are the very bricks on which white supremacy, and it’s resultant racism, are built.

Let us call it out for what it is and hope that you will change course and support these families in need.

Beatrice Perron Dahlen


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