Family Moab

Family Moab
In Arches National Park

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

We Stand With the People

"I just want the world to know, that we in the diocese of Washington, following Jesus and his way of love...we distance ourselves from the incendiary language of this President. We follow someone who lived a life of nonviolence and sacrificial love."
- Right Reverend Mariann Edgar Budde, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington

"We stand with the Black Lives Matter movement. We stand with the grassroots organizations who have been doing and continue to do this hard work. WE STAND WITH THE PEOPLE."
- Marisa Siegel, The Rumpus

Over one hundred thousand dead from COVID 19, including many who could have been saved by earlier action or better protective gear, including a high percentage of loved ones from black and brown communities. It's difficult to believe that such great trauma was a mere backdrop for the horrible murder of a man of color at the hands of white police. Thousands of protesters spilled into the streets despite the health risk of the pandemic, explaining that the ills of racism would kill them sooner and more surely than any virus.

Then, on Monday, peaceful protesters were gassed and shot with rubber bullets and pepper spray by our own military so that the president could stand before a church and fumble with a Bible, as if a photo op and polished video could blind us to his inadequacy, his weakness. Forty-five wants to use the military on us, on all of those who oppose him, and particularly on people of color. I am jumping out of my skin to do something meaningful for the people, something beyond admitting my complicity in the culture of racism, something more than have difficult conversations with my children.

I came back to my blog several months ago with a goal of using words to "deepen the argument for being alive" and in that mode I stayed away from our inherently divisive politics, but that is no longer possible. In order to deepen the argument for everyone to live, I have to speak. When  my neighbor said yesterday that protests were merely frustrating, always ending in violence and never solving anything, I asked him why the problem was the protests and not the great issue of racism that spurred them. By working to break down racist structures we could remove the need for protests.

It must also be said that President Trump should resign or be removed from office. We can't wait until November, can't sit by and watch further tragedy unfold over the next five to seven months. We are all in danger, as events of Monday night illustrated. My family, along with people of faith who follow Jesus or Buddha or Mohammed, must stand with the people and say that Black Lives Matter, racism exists, and our president's dictatorial desires cannot be indulged by his lackeys.  We will use words, written and spoken, donations, our names, our votes and our bodies, but we will speak out. This is an historic moment - we can't blind ourselves to the danger of a mad man's overreach. Stephen Colbert urged us all to "be our own presidents" in the absence of federal leadership, and so we must act as leaders and we must use our speech before we lose it.

June 5, 2020 - post script
Here's an article with many links to causes where you can donate money, if you are so inclined. To fill in the void created by not going to protests, I've been busy with some of the causes on this page:

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