Today the ugliness that has been festering in the United States went from ideological to reality for me. Now it’s personal. That doesn’t mean I haven’t been outraged before this, that I haven’t taken all the upheaval seriously and been sick at heart, but now….
For several years I’ve been involved in modest protest (emails, phone calls, petitions, social media posts), and more frequently since the November election, speaking up for those who are being marginalized in alarming numbers:
- Gay and lesbian family and friends who are told they don’t have the right to marry, to live where they chose, to hold down jobs, to be with each other in sickness and in health
- The Native Americans who fight against the environmental horrors occurring at Standing Rock
- Individuals who face economic ruin, illness, and yes, death, with the repeal of the Affordable Care Act
- The senseless shootings and mass murders plaguing our schools and our churches/mosques and our neighborhoods
- The harassment and vandalism and terror inflicted on religious minorities
On January 21st, Hubby and I joined the Women’s March in downtown Dayton, Ohio, in support of so many others:
- Women who depend on Planned Parenthood for gynecology visits and reproductive care
- LGBTQIA individuals whose rights are threatened on so many fronts
- Immigrants from Mexico and parts south who are demonized and now are to be walled out of our country
- Muslims who are blamed for all the evils in the shadowy, ill-defined War on Terror
On January 29th, Hubby and I returned to downtown Dayton to protest the Muslim ban enacted by the latest (at that time) Executive Order from the White House.
On January 30th, I mourned with many online for the terror attack by a white male Christian (?!) at a mosque in Quebec City, Ontario, where six people were killed.
Today, January 31st, all the others we’ve been standing for, fighting for, protesting for, mourning for, became us. Became family. Became real.
Along with 16 other Jewish Community Centers in multiple states across the country, the Sylvania (Ohio) YWCA/JCC was evacuated today because of bomb threats – the third time in the past month that a spate of such threats have targeted these types of institutions.
Today that number included my 3-year-old grandson’s preschool.
Today, the hate promulgated and encouraged and modeled by our new president became real.
It’s not ideology any longer. It’s not social justice outrage. It’s personal.
If you voted for DT, for this man who fosters hate and violence, this man who disdains any life other than of those who look like him – white, male, professed Christians, preferably wealthy beyond comprehension – and you’re not outraged, you’re not speaking out, you’re not taking a stand and holding him accountable, then you’re enabling the hate. You’re defending the violence. You’re contributing to the chaos that is destroying our government.
And stopping the actions, or inactions, of you and your ilk – friend, family, neighbor, or stranger – has become my life’s mission.