We are stronger
Confucius said: "It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop." I've had a lot on my mind these past couple of weeks, and have refrained from joining the public conversation. Instead, I have been choosing to stay intently focused on and having private conversations with friends, associates, students in my Leadership Communications class, and with family members. I do, however, have a few thoughts I'd like to chronicle for posterity, as this blog on my personal website allows me to do. We live in a postmodern world...what I saw during the 2016 U.S. Presidential election was a battle between those who were seeking plurality, inclusiveness, and equality...and those who somehow interpreted the call for change as a threat to their worldviews. The clash between religious fundamentalism and secularism has left ugly scars in the American consciousness and polarized generations of believers on both sides. Meanwhile, those of us "in the middle"—who believe in equity and don't see it as a threat to our worldviews—remained... ...disenchanted ...yearning for change ...NOT wanting to join the strident, unproductive, divisive fringe conversations ...and I, in fact, avoided them while I continued to lay low and secretly desire some semblance of sanity and reason, respect...and, unification. I'll admit, I didn't have much hope. Perhaps it is ironic that it took the social media video transmission of a black man having the life snuffed out of him by a white policeman who, quite frankly, appeared to be enjoying himself, that a new "woke-ness" has arrived on a scale not seen in years. Do I dare have hope now, as scores of Americans come to terms with our history of unconscionable transgressions and atrocities against human beings because of the color of their skin...? Really, lynching wasn't enough? I'm still a skeptic. However, in the spirit of wholesale change that now appears to be catching on...I will continue doing my part to use my network, heart, and skills...to help in whatever minuscule, minute at a time, person at a time, way that I can do and be... ...to speak when the silence needs to be broken, to present the evidence with passion and conviction, to remind when memories fail, and to feel the pain of human beings I consider my brothers and sisters... ...if/when they’ll let me. I, too, being a white woman..and, hells bells being a "Karen" at that (the new pejorative term for self-absorbed, entitled white women, JEEZ)...will be listening and learning with all humility and compassion. I will make mistakes. I always do. But I won’t let that stop me from trying. Our current state of national chaos calls for one universal truth. And that is: we are stronger when we are given love. Not hate. To be honest, if I had been born black, I don't know that I would have been able to turn the other cheek as so many have, for so long. They have not stopped.
Maybe I'll just say this, in closing: In the upcoming U.S. Presidential election, look for the candidates who understand how the inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness apply to ALL people.