I have been wondering, for a while, what it would take to get me writing again.
Apparently, the collapse of democracy.
The rise of a government that pursues agendas that are unconstitutional in spirit and in letter has caused a parallel rise from the people, and from me.
Today I read about a seven-year-old boy who hasn’t seen his father in three years because his family are refugees and he and his mom were relocated to the US while his father remained in Sweden. This week, his father was finally freed to rejoin his family, and visa in hand, he boarded a plane for the USA. And was detained upon landing and barred from seeing his lawyers. And Customs and Immigration told the lawyers the only person they could call was through President Trump. Is this democracy? Is this humanity? Is this anything other than criminal incompetence, xenophobic hatefulness, and a raw desire to burn down the system that should serve us all?
I understand the extent to which some people may say that a blog like mine, mostly devoted to the experience of living a good life, is not a place for political posts, but I think it is exactly the place. I cannot live a good life if my neighbors are suffering, if my world is being polluted and drowned, if my daily choices have consequences opposite to my own values. If I am silent, I am consenting in my government’s horrific acts against humanity, and I’ve been ducking that truth for far too long.
So now it’s the long slog: marching where we can; making phone calls; sending emails and letters; showing up at representatives’ offices when we can. And organizing. Organizing to beat the band, because this whole hateful rodeo depends primarily on the silence and disunity of the people. So we read and we honor those who have walked this road before us and we find hope wherever we can — and these posts will be about that, also. About how my husband’s photographic-quality printer has been churning out Shep Fairey’s “We the People” posters for whoever wants them. About the cold rally in the snow we will attend downtown this afternoon to speak up for immigrant and refugee rights. About friends and family who have always been private finding that their silence, too, is complicit, and asking on Facebook how they can get involved. About deep, honest conversations among people with deep differences that nonetheless can end in respect and newfound common ground.
Because hope is possible, but only in the rising up.