Friday, November 13, 2020

More To Say

So, since 2016, I've been wrestling with how much to say on the subject of a former reality television personality, and I admit, I didn't want to get involved, then I didn't want to sound alarmist, and of course I really wanted to believe his bid for the White House could not possibly amount to anything. Some people let me know I did say too much, that I was being alarmist, and disrespectful, naive, a buttercup. Those people were wrong, and in some cases they were the fragile buttercups. I should have said as much as I cared to, as much as I dared, because all the while I have been observant, reasoning, judicious, and earnest, and emotional, and the failed businessman has been genuinely deplorable. That anyone ever gave him a chance, heard him out, respected his points of view is a failing that will cost us for a generation, or more. Probably my biggest advantage as a blogger has been my obscurity, because I have not been trolled (much), nor admonished, unfollowed (much). But if anyone asks, if anyone takes issue with my posts, with my IG account and stories, where I post support of Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ, and I celebrate Indigenous identity, accomplishments, where I am Political, then I hope I would be as eloquent and succinct as Gabrielle Blair is in her post, Hey Trump Supporters: I Don't Make Content For You. The thing is, I must add, so much of this is not actually political, but moral, a matter of justice, decency, and I will not tolerate choices that demean, degrade, and discriminate against people.

"At least this time," I declared to Geoff, as we waited for the election results to post,"I won't waste my time offering olive branches, taking the time to listen to, and sympathize, with those 'poor, white, rural, good souls who have suffered at the indifference of East and West Coast elites.' Because that was utter tripe." Seriously. After fours years of witnessing what this administration and its supporters have to offer, it's evident enough: It offers lies, corruption, treason, impeachment, racism, hate, embarrassment, disgrace, and backwards acts against the environment, human rights, and our health. We are no greater, we are not winning, and every single time he committed a new gross deed, I heard from the people we were asked to care for, and they were pleased, thankful because it was all they wanted, to make liberals cry, to be free to say whatever crossed their brains, however low, base, cruel, or hateful. My time and energy, my concern goes to everyone else... to everyone not being racist, not pushing conspiracies, and hate, to the victims of systemic racism, to the disabled, and uninsured, for BIPOC, and for the environment, for anyone trying to make a living, and letting others live. We have lives, and stories, too! It happens that Rebecca Solnit recognized the cognitive dissonance two years ago. Her essay in LitHub, "Whose Story (and Country) Is This," is another good read. It opened my eyes, addressing the feelings I have carried around with reason, and evidence. I think her article pairs nicely with a newer piece, by Mahshid Hager, "An Open Letter to the Racist Half of America." We are America, too. Yes, and I want our stories told, listened to, respected.

I would like to thank Melissa, of Julia's Bookbag for the links to some of these articles, and for many more leads to thoughtful, inspiring, fun, and good blogs, tweets, recipes, etc. And yes, some of it, thankfully is political!


Anonymous said...

I could not agree more!! But I long since gave up on arguing with these people on FB. (Heck, I long since gave up on FB.) It’s not worth it. I have been more political in the last four years than in the previous 40+ years, marching, donating, writing postcards (too introverted to phonebank), and I start the calls or emails to GOP leaders with “I’m a middle-aged, middle-class, married, straight, white, Catholic mom in the suburbs with a minivan. You say your opponents are radical, but I’m far from radical— I’m just a decent human being. When people like me think your policies are evil, you should be worried.”

There are so many things I despise about what Trump has done, but the one that I experience pretty much daily— I live in SoCal— is knowing that people of color really should, for their own safety, assume because I’m white that I’m a racist who voted for Trump. At my kids’ school, it’s a minority-majority Catholic school, 70% nonwhite, mostly Latinx, so I hope at least they can assume I wouldn’t pay money to enroll my kiddos there if I were a bigot. But the young black man who was jogging in our neighborhood — probably his neighborhood too, but I don’t know him— the other night when I was walking with my boys? He looked startled until I smiled and did my goofy wave and said hello. And I blame Donald Trump and his like for that— this young guy in running shoes and shorts getting his run in could end up like Ahmaud Arbery because of people who look like me. He shouldn’t have to worry about that. We have so much healing to do.

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Thank you, first of all, for all of your work to save democracy. Seriously... I am so appreciative of every thing people did to make a difference. It worked! And thank you for sharing your story with me, for sharing details about your life and who you are. It's very sad to admit, but when I read about how many MORE white women still voted for 45, I was gobsmacked, and scared, depressed, uneasy. We are in Southern California, too, which is considered liberal... yet! We hear white women walking by our home, in conversation with each other or on their phones, and they are loudly professing hate of democrats, fear of BLM, rage over rioting mobs of anti-fascists that are soon to come and run amok in their neighborhoods. I kid you not. You're so right: We have so much healing to do.