I’ve been having a hard time bringing myself to write these past few days. Obviously, with all of the images and stories that have been on television and in the media, it’s been hard to not be moved and saddened. I keep asking myself how can I find joy when it seems that each day brings more and more terrible news?
The easy answer to that is in my family. I look at my children – how can joy not spark up? Still, with that spark comes a big dose of guilt – I have my children here with me (thank heaven!), but there are so many families suffering right now because of what our government has done. These parents are just trying to help their children survive – who wouldn’t do the same?
So where is the true, guilt-free (ish) joy?
It’s in the little things I see happening in our world that bring hope. The story of American families – parents with babies strapped to their chests – going into ICE headquarters and protesting.
It’s in the many, many voices speaking out against this atrocity. Heck, even I called my representative!
It’s in thinking about the truth – we are stronger together than we are divided. In the end, we are all human beings. There is no “us” and “them.” There’s just us! We may all come from different places in the world and have different experiences and perspectives, but in the end, the thing that brings us together is that we are all human. That can’t be denied.
So for those of you who are feeling helpless or powerless because of what you’re hearing about, keep your chin up and do something! Even if it’s simply calling a representative or senator, make your voices heard!
We’ve been reading a lot of Dr. Suess here lately, and our most recent favorite is Horton Hears a Who. For those of you who don’t know the story (spoiler alert!), Horton is an elephant who hears a “yelp” coming from a speck of dust. It turns out that there is a whole village living on this little speck of dust, and he decides to protect them from being hurt. His reason for helping – “A person’s a person, no matter how small.” He is the only one who hears the Whos. All the other animals in the forest think he is crazy and they get really angry at him. He spends the whole story trying to protect the Whos and convince the other animals that they exist. Towards the end, he is captured by the angry mob and tied up, all the while the mob is planning to boil the speck in a pot of Beezlenut Oil. Horton tells the mayor of Whoville to have all the Whos make as much noise as they can so that the animals can hear them. The Whos bang and shout “We are here! We are here!” until the mayor finds 1 silent Who. He urges him to make noise, and his little “Yop!” is the thing that the animals hear. The animals are shocked when they realize there are people on this speck and they vow to protect them too. The Whos are saved by Horton and every voice in Whoville speaking up.
Now, I don’t know about you, but this book hits home! Let’s all bring our voices together wherever we see injustice, whether it’s in family separations, in passing immigration bills that don’t require family detentions centers to have clean water, food, or medical care, in taking food out of the mouths of 400,000 vulnerable families (that was just passed in House’s Farm Bill in recent days), or in a new tax bill for 2019 that makes massive cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid that has been proposed in recent days. Call your congresspeople and your senators, and most importantly, when the time comes, know where they stand on important issues and get out and Vote!