It’s not okay: passivity

There are so many people, people I look up to.  People that are my guides for navigating the politics of the world.  People who are mature and well read and well researched.  People who have their biases  in check.  And many of these people have called for acceptance of the election results.  To give Trump a chance to prove himself.  To wait.  This is not okay to me.  Im not about to go out and blindly bash in car windows and set things on fire.  But I will be active and I will be vigilant.  I watched the documentary 13th a few months ago.  It was really great.  It ends with this quote from Bryan Stevenson:

“People say all the time I don’t understand how people could have tolerated slavery, how people could have made peace with that? How could people have gone to a lynching and participated in that? How did people make sense of the segregation, this white and colored-only drinking… That’s so crazy. If I was living at that time, I would never have tolerated anything like that. And the the truth is we are living at a time like that and we are tolerating it.”We have spent years tolerating injustice.  We have spent years thinking it will go away, or it is not directly affecting us.  Or someone else will take care of it.  We watched as Donald Trump stood at his podium of self-righteous narcissism and promoted hate, disrespect, and tyranny.   I sat and watched.  I did not see this as a possibility.  I really though that this would go away, melt into history as an embarrassment.  I should have been active all along.  I should have been active every day.  I should have recognized my white privilege and checked it at the door.

And I didn’t.  Just like Bryan Stevenson said,”and the truth is we are living at a time like that and we are tolerating it.”  I laid in bed the night of the election and though: “I will hide gay people i8432dc3d4e70497892f25691737b3b75n my attic”.  Because I realized that the government could easily decide to round them up and do who knows what.  But now I realize, I cant just decide to hide people, I need to advocate, fight, demonstrate, write, talk, march, protest, protect, stand up… so I do not need to hide people.

We have already waited and we already see.  We know.  We know that 3 white boys in Mississippi put a noose around the next of a black boy and tugged it.  And we know when that boys parents went to the police they asked them not to report it.  We know that white middle schoolers made a human wall so a minority student could not walk into school.  We know people have told minorities to “go back to your country, this is Trumps American now”.  We know woman have had a rise in harassment, we know that women have had their hijab ripped of their head. We know.  So we act.

elie-wiesel-quote

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