Anyone else here wondering how to identify the truck that just ran us over?
So, the country has elected a President who does not reflect my value orientation. I think it's safe to say that when the Ku Klux Klan holds a parade to celebrate your election, you and I are NOT on the same page.
But there it is. He's the President-elect, and now we have to figure out what to do about it.
A lot of my friends have been talking about moving to another country. Some of my friends are not even joking about it. Some people are actively making plans. So many people were exploring their options that the Canadian Immigration website crashed. (Me? I thought longingly about New Zealand. It's so beautiful there. Plus: one of my favorite artists ever lives there, Jennie deGroot.)
But here's the thing: I can't abandon the people and populations I love without a fight, because they are going to need me. People of color, people with disabilities (how I wish that when I thought of Donald Trump, I could get the visual of him mocking that person with disabilities out of my mind,) the poor, the elderly, anyone who identifies in the LGBTQIA spectrum, immigrants, refugees, our beloved planet--all of these populations and things NEED US.
Now more than ever.
This country needs our collective heart, our compassion, our energy to work for inclusion and policies that take care of the most vulnerable among us. America needs us. So, we can take our ball and go home, or we can work to change the rules of this new game we're playing so that everybody gets to suit up.
Remember this column, A Warrior for Peace? I feel that same calling right now. I've grown complacent. I've been so focused on the upheaval in my own family --illness, divorce, teenagers --that I forgot my larger goal of changing the world through unrelenting kindness, compassion, inclusion, advocacy, and intervention. I'm getting to work right this second on behalf of the causes and populations who need me. I'm raising money for women's health, for refugees, for my people outside of the gender binary, for climate change, for people with disabilities. I'm volunteering my time, my energy and my talents on behalf of those who do not feel safe or welcome in Trump's America.
Remember this famous poem by Pastor Martin Niemoeller?
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
I will use my voice and my privilege to speak out.
I will not be silent.
If you'd like to join me, please leave your plan of action in the comments--we could all use more ideas! Any organizations of social justice or change that you support? Tell us why. Every positive action is welcome here --from buying a cup of coffee for a disenfranchised person, to marching on protest, to volunteering at the local food bank, to helping settle refugee families, to writing letters of support --anything that taps into your personal privilege and power for the benefit of those outside of the straight, white, Christian paradigm.
And if you are one of those people who feels afraid because you don't feel welcome in Trump's America, know that this is a safe place to speak of that, and that I will do everything in my power to protect you.
(Just a reminder about the comments: I welcome and encourage civil discourse. But if you comment intolerant or hate-filled sentiments, I will delete your comment. My blog wears a safety pin.)