The Women’s March on Washington was not without its faults–that’s for sure. This event was thrown together over the course of 11 weeks. It grew from an idea to a whole, living, growing movement and that’s awesome. But do you know what my favorite part of the march is? The fact that this march didn’t represent one movement. You look out into the crowds and you don’t see all one type of sign. It’s not all about reproductive rights or all about the wage gap. It’s not even all about women’s rights specifically. There were people there standing in for refugees, LGBTQ+ people, there were signs about safe water, people wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts, people chanting about saving our education system, there were thousands and thousands of people scattered around and I promise that they didn’t all agree on everything. They didn’t even agree on what was the most important issue that brought them all together. But they were there and they were cool with each other because that’s what support is. This wasn’t an anti-Trump rally, it was a gathering under the banner of justice. And I’m down with that.
My other favorite part is that it’s that it’s not done. It’s not a matter of a bunch of women standing out in the cold and feeling good about themselves and then going home. We have work to do and we’re going to do it. Every ten days, the organizers of the Women’s March will release a new action for us to take–with detailed instructions. A group of us in town have committed to meeting together to take these actions. What I like about this is that it will instill a spirit of habit–we’ll make a habit of speaking up and staying informed and energized. When the 100 days are over, we’ll still have this habit in us to keep going.
This time we wrote postcards. We got together and said things like, “What on earth can we say that will just fit on a post card?” Some people wrote about the Affordable Health Care act, asking our Senators to please come up with a replacement before repealing. Some people asked for things and others just said, “here’s what I’m fighting for.” I told Pat Roberts and Jerry Moran about my friends–my gay friends who have to hurry to get married now and hope that it stays legal. My immigrant friends who live under the radar. My friends from Muslim families who have been targeted, attacked, denied, and live in fear of what’s around the corner. I told them about my disabled friends who need these government programs to survive and thrive and I told them that I will always stand up for these people and I’ll never back down. I told them that maybe I didn’t vote for them in the past but truth be told I’ll vote for anyone who listens to me. And that’s true.
Update: I stopped writing this post to go make dinner and start a loaf of bread in the bread machine. A few hours later, I got back to my computer and logged into Facebook only to see that protests are spontaneously breaking out around the country at international airports to rise up against Donald Trump’s Muslim ban. Right now I’m streaming the live feed from the Washington Post. As I’m typing, I’m listening to the chants:
“Hey hey! Ho ho! Islamaphobia’s got to go!”
“Show me what America looks like! This is what America looks like!”
“No hate! No fear! Refugees are welcome here!”
“Yes! We can! Say ‘no’ to the Muslim ban!”
“Love! Not hate! Makes America great!”
And every time a new fleet of people comes in off a plane–looking thrilled and confused, the whole crowd cheers with applause! God, it’s beautiful. I haven’t claimed to know much about Jesus in a long time but going by what I’ve heard about him in the past, I think he’d be here to help welcome these people who were probably apprehensive to step off these planes.
Look, I’m not going to have a firm hold on every single issue that pulls at my heart. It’s not healthy and you really can’t give of yourself in every single direction. You have to choose a few that you can really give towards. But I’m here for my Muslim brothers and sisters all day.
Say it loud! Say it clear! Muslims are welcome here!
Say it loud! Say it clear! Muslims are welcome here!
Our world is changing and we get to watch. Better yet–we get to have a hand in it. I don’t know what I’m doing, really. I’m just standing up when I can. Pitching in when I can. Watching and sharing and telling when I can. Trying not to be too scared. Putting one foot in front of the other and I hope you do it, too.
PS And just as I was finishing this post, it was announced that a federal judge blocked Trump’s immigration order. It was signed 3 minutes ago. I mean, who knows how long it will last but it’s a step in the right direction and it deserves to be celebrated. History is now, my friends. Wow. We’re in it.
2 thoughts on “10/100: Postcards”
Keep fighting the good fight, Libby & people of Kansas. Thankfully my representative more or less represents me accurately (my only beef is that he is for more military spending– makes sense since he represents San Diego). It’s not as motivating to write to someone who is already “on your side” but we do make sure that we support him as he reflects us.
I’m glad your group is finding a way to keep the momentum going. You spoke of people marching about saving our educational system. If part of the march was to stand in support for people of color, education would be a great thing for people to focus on.