The following is the prepared transcript of David April’s video address to the Beer Runners membership via Facebook Live on June 4, 2020.

As the founder and leader of the Fishtown Beer Runners, I would be remiss and irresponsible if I didn’t address the unfolding events occurring in our country, our city, and our neighborhood.  I decided not to post a statement earlier, but rather choose to use this opportunity to speak from my heart directly to you.  

My intent over the years has been to keep FBR and its social media focused exclusively on our mission of running, drinking beer, and charity fundraising all in the interest of science, and to keep FBR out of political discussions and controversial issues.  Instead,  I’ve tried to lead by example and sought to build this running club based on inclusiveness and being welcoming to all.   Inclusive of all abilities, races, creeds, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientation, and political views. In short, I’ve tried to respect all people and to treat everyone like I wish to be treated. 

The week’s event has reminded me that FBR is not isolated from the world….and has much work to do to become a fully inclusive group. I vow to do this work and invite all of you to help me in crafting a vision for the future and actionable steps. 

I believe the first step is to recognize the killing of George Floyd and the response that led to the events that took place on Monday.  Vigilantes roaming the streets of Fishtown under the guise of protecting the police and business disgusted me.   Make no mistake, they were there to intimidate peaceful protesters and to fan the flames of racism and fear.  At one point it became an old vs new Fishtown stand-off.  While these agitators may be of the neighborhood, they do not represent  Fishtown, they do not represent me, they do not represent FBR, and they do not represent the old Fishtown neighbors. I know too many families who have been here for generations that are so proud of how Fishtown has grown and changed. They have welcomed me and FBR. 

Let me be crystal clear, I, as a private citizen and as the founder of the Fishtown Beer Runners, denounce hate and bigotry and anyone who was complicit, including those police officers who condoned it.  I have great respect for those who marched in peace over the last couple of days to express their anger over this incident as well as the killing of George Floyd at the hands of police officers. I also acknowledge those officers who are true public servants protecting all citizens and working from within to change the structure, culture, policies, and tactics that have led to decades of brutality and discrimination against black and minority communities.  And I urge more to do so.

I’ll close by saying to runners of all backgrounds, you are welcomed in FBR. Our diversity makes us stronger and our similarities and interests bind us together.  

To The Professor!