While I have tried very hard in my life not to make too much noise about either politics or religion unless it was thoughtful, open-minded, and sought-after discussion, something that has remained very near and dear to my heart always were the battles that took place to give us the rights that we have today.
I have always had the privilege to exercise my right to vote, as have the majority of both women and people of color currently living.
We did not always have these rights.
We have them because of people who fought – people who died – to give them to us.
I initially felt helpless when I got back from an off-grid float yesterday to find the country the most divided I have seen it since 1992, in the Rodney King aftermath.
So I sat with a silent, angry heart, and felt helpless, as I imagine many of you do. For every destructive rioter with rage in their heart, there are so, so many more people who are peacefully protesting. And those of us who do, who always have, wanted equality regardless of race, creed, orientation, or religious beliefs, would love for that to be achieved peacefully.
For those of you who feel helpless right along with me, please know that there are things that you can do to help.
- Ask. I promise there are people who can point you in the right direction. If you don’t have money, maybe you have time because you (like me) are out of work right now.
- Give. Whether it is your time, your money, your expertise – you have something to give this world. You matter. Don’t hide that gift when your country needs it the most.
- Vote. And if you can’t vote, educate yourself on issues. If you don’t like the way your officials, from local to state to national, are handling the jobs voters granted them, then get involved. Make phone calls. Write letters. Ask questions, and get answers. Be qualified to answer questions that you may be asked. If you are happy with your local or state officials, but worry about other states, I promise those candidates will need your help, too.
Articles (I tried to stay middle-of-the-road and stick with Forbes) with links to worthy donations:
Forbes article’s Covid-19 Giving Guide
And there are so many people offering to pay protestor bail and lawyers giving free legal advice and aid that I couldn’t possibly name them all.
We’re still the United States of America in name. Let’s also be the united states in action.
If you have any questions, and still don’t know who to ask, ask me here. If I don’t know, I will find out. And if you need help, even if it’s just a listening ear, I’m here for that, too.
Take care of yourselves out there.
*photo courtesy of Forbes.com.