Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Love and resist

This is going to be a raw post, because the mood here in and around Portland is raw. Bear with me. I have to get this out.

How are you? has become a loaded question. No one here is asking, How was your weekend? Because I live near, and work in, a city where senseless hate claimed two lives and impacted so many others last Friday.

It's not OK. We're not OK. And it feels personal when it happens where you live.

I rarely get angry, but I am angry. Sad, raw, and angry. It takes the White House until Monday morning, and being nagged on social media by a member of Congress and Dan Rather, to respond and say this is wrong? Any previous president in the past couple of decades would be here, meeting with the families and the survivor, calling for unity and condemning the hatred and violence.
Not this one. This one had to be badgered into condemning senseless hatred and violence, and even then, didn't respond personally, but did it in a staff account on Twitter.

This one and his ilk bear responsibility for inciting the hatred and violence that has become a pattern, that has emboldened those want to live in the America of 100 years ago.

What is heartening is the fact that I believe most of us don't want that. We may disagree politically, but most Americans are, I feel, reasonable. We don't think it's OK to shout racial or religious slurs at teenage girls on the train. We don't think it's OK for people to be afraid just because of the color of their skin, how they choose to worship, or who they choose to love.

Some people chimed in immediately, saying this guy must be mentally ill. As someone who lives with major depressive disorder and some other things, I can tell you that the overwhelming majority of the time, people living with mental illness are more likely to be crime victims, not perpetrators.

I saw a great headline from a column: "Racism is not a mental illness."

It is heartening to see the outpouring of love from the community here. More than $1 million has been raised for the families of the victims; more than $20,000 has been raised for the girls, in case they need mental health and/or counseling services. I know I would.

So maybe, as John Lennon says, "Love is the answer."

I say, love and resist.

10 comments:

Elephant's Child said...

Definitely love and resist. While doing a little hissing and spitting from the side.

Birdie said...

I have had to stop watching the news. Because it is all too much. Much too much. A leader of a country is supposed to lead and to bring words of comfort to those who are afraid and hurting. DT is clueless. Because he appears to be a sociopath. Sociopaths don't understand fear and definitely don't understand comforting someone else. It's a sad day.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Yes, that is such a horrible story on so many different levels. My heart goes out to the victims and their families.

Lee said...

Love is the answer, but there are too many in this world who don't understand that...who wouldn't have a clue. Violence, sadly, is their choice and the innocent suffer.

The world is in a sorry state.

Abby said...

I can only imagine what it was like to be on that train, especially for the two girls. Yes, love AND resist.

Jono said...

Incidents like this make it difficult not to lose faith in humanity. The idiots in charge are not helping to make things better except for themselves and their ilk. Maybe things will be better after the revolution.

A Beer For The Shower said...

I love this post. Like you said, I think the majority of people abhor and reject this kind of behavior. I wish people would stop making this into a partisan thing, and instead, use it to unify us, so that we may be able to all at least agree on this ONE thing: don't be shitty to each other for no good reason, and stand up when you do see someone being shitty to someone else for no good reason.

Charles Gramlich said...

How weird, I guess, that in this world, it was unbelievable to me when I first heard of this incident. I just could't imagine someone so hate filled just riding along on a train. I think there are many, many Americans who might well have been among the slain if they'd been riding that day. that is a terrible kind of comfort, but it is good to think that there are those who still care to confront this kind of thing

Lynn said...

I am amazed at the hatred that is going on - it breaks my heart and makes me so angry.

But I agree with you, my friend, love and resist.

Granny Annie said...

Big thoughts.