I really do.
I love that you care. I love that you BELIEVE things can be different. I love that you understand the interconnected of all of us. I love that you hope for better. I love that we are in this together.
I’m tired of the negative. I’m tired of the attacks. I’m tired of focusing energy on drama. I’m tired of the repetitive loop.
I believe in love. I do. I know it matters more than anything else. I know if we lead with love we can solve so many problems, maybe all the world’s problems, if love is our motivation.
It’s been over six months since I last posted. The world continues to go mad, not just in crazy but in hot, angry, boiling over, ready to blow.
This feels like an appropriate response and yet, I battle with my outrage and struggle with the right way to show up. I can’t keep perpetuating the divide, the us and them mentality, as there is no us and them. We are all the same. We want the same. Our tactics are different.
Last week I had dinner with my wife’s extended family who voted for Trump. Makes me want to hate them. This is my primal response. They are Grandparents and Great Grandparents. I want to shake and scream what the fuck is wrong with you?!!! And this gets me nowhere. This keeps stuck in the divided unsettling chaotic experience of us vs. them.
When my wife’s former Mother in Law spoke of the hatred in the world, which she did in the same way I do, as in why are people so mean, I told her we share the same values. She shook head in disbelief. I said of course we do. We simply believe there is a different path to getting there.
Is this ignorant of me? Am I being naïve?
Perhaps she doesn’t believe that I, as a Gay woman, should have the same rights as she and her husband. Perhaps she doesn’t believe that her 4-year-old grandson should have clean air breathe. Or maybe she doesn't believe science. Maybe she thinks immigrant children deserve to be ripped from their families and left to rot in subhuman conditions. Or maybe she just doesn’t care, maybe a tax-break means more to her than we do.
She has raised a beautiful son who is a wonderful man. She loves her husband. I know she means well. I know she is made of love. I imagine she thinks I’m as misguided as I believe she is. We’re divided. We can’t find each other in a moral universe. We can talk weather, movies and books but we can’t talk about leadership, right versus wrong or anything that appears remotely political even if it’s value based.
She loves my wife. I know she wants the best for her and yet she supports a group of people who want more than anything to strip us of our rights. It is so confusing and deeply painful. And I can’t make sense out of the why behind it.
Is this how Martin Luther King felt when choosing non-violence in the face of brutal life threatening discrimination? How did he show up peacefully in the face of torture, brutality, cruelty, violence and death?
When I stare at the negligence, cruelty and heartlessness of men like Mitch McConnell, who am I to say we can love our way out of this? I wish him dead. That’s not peaceful. He makes me feel so out of control and want him to suffer. This goes against everything I stand for morally and his soul shattering cruelty brings out the worst in me.
McConnell and his minions are declaring war on everything I value and yet I want to believe we can love our way out of this.
I think about peaceful protests that turn violent. I lived in Los Angeles after the Rodney King trial. I watched from my parent’s hilltop home as the city burned. Days later I drove through neighborhoods that were emotionally and physically demolished and I caught my first glimpse of no justice, no peace. No Justice, No Peace.
When you ask to be heard over and over and over and over and over and over and over again and nobody is listening, eventually you throw a brick through a storefront window and then you’re heard. And misunderstood. And judged. And cast aside in a bigger way.
Can we love our way out of this?
Can we love deep enough that we stop being shocked by the behaviors of those in charge, stop re-tweeting, stop clicking on articles of disconnected outrage to drop into our broken hearts and collective suffering? Can we turn our outrage into inspired, empowered actions that connect us through our common core of humanity? Can we be the change we want and inspire the change we need?
Can I do that? Can I look into the abyss and know that together we can? Can I sit a table of Trump supporters and find love in my heart regardless of the pain? Can I disconnect from the activities that feed this machine and participate in the imaginings that create the connected compassionate world I long for?
Here are the actions I am committed to –
HELP IMMIGRANT CHILDREN IMMEDIATELY. This is a consolidated list of organizations we can support who are on the ground fighting for the lives of immigrant families who are unjustly suffering.
DON’T SAY HIS NAME! On Mondays, I don’t click on articles that lead with Trump. Each time we click, we let media outlets know we want more like this. So I don’t. I sick of stories about his disease. Instead, I search for articles about heroes fighting for women’s reproductive rights, environmental health, LGBTQ activities. I don’t retweet. I don’t participate in the trumped up frenzy. Give it a try. If you need to know what’s happening, subscribe to WTF Just Happened Today for updates. No need to click on anything to read the news.
GET HATE SPEECH OFF THE AIRWAVES AND INTERNET. Hate networks depend on advertising dollars. I support Sleeping Giants who runs campaigns to stop advertisers from supporting hate speech. They have been incredibly affective. I highly recommend following them and doing everything they say to do - https://twitter.com/slpng_giants
This June 27th marks the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. That fateful night at the Stonewall bar in the West Village, where LGBTQ people were done with being arrested and humiliated for being themselves and loving freely, they fought back and created the pathway for LGBTQ rights, Pride and Marriage Equality. Please support and love those who identify as LGBTQ. We are still fighting for our lives. Here is a list of organizations to support.
Lastly, I have to work diligently from not participating in hate. This is complex as the brutality, cruelty and neglect are so prolific. I am so outraged and disgusted by those in charge. And I am not here to perpetuate hate. I am here to bridge divides.
We must vote them out.
We must never be silent.
We must build coalitions of unity.
We must enact laws to protect people.
We must lead with our hearts. With kindness and generosity and love people into the light.
I hope I’m up for this. Throwing a brick is easier.
With love and gratitude.
P.S. I am interested in going to the border to protect the immigrant children. Does anybody know of organizations that are doing this or would like to join me?