Last night’s post really blew up on Facebook in ways that I didn’t intend. I purposely made it public instead of using off my No Politics filter and the result was a lot of name calling and fighting, and even a really nasty exchange with my Dad.
It still shocks me how anyone could look at so many examples of violence and hate and have their first response be anything other than shock and disgust.
That said, late this evening it was reported that one of the stories about a Muslim woman getting her Hijab torn off was fabricated, and I fear that people will use that example to assume that every last story they hear must also be false.
I refuse to believe that.
It’s also been hard for me to process people arguing that the protests taking place are “just sore losers” and not a legitimate voice worth listening to. If nothing else, our own Constitution guarantees people the Freedom to Assemble, and though it doesn’t condone any violence or destruction of property, I think compared to people actually getting hurt in the name of racism/sexism/etc… it’s a minor concern at best.
That said, with all of the negativity and fear being harbored, I’ve found comfort in a smaller group of likeminded friends and family whom I respect and trust on social media – many of whom are also struggling with how to process everything that’s taking place – and it’s nice to see that there are others who also deem what’s taking place to be something serious that shouldn’t just be swept under the rug.
I also took a lot of comfort in this compilation of stories from teachers about how they’ve addressed their students’ responses to Trump’s election from pretty much all grade levels. As much as I worry about youth hearing the horrible things that are being said and parroting them, the fact that many children identify that this sort of behavior is wrong and are willing to help support one another across demographic barriers gives me hope.
And finally, in that same story I came across a quote by Nobel Laureate Desmond Tutu that I liked quite a bit:
“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.”
As I walked through Walmart late this evening, I found myself reminding myself that there are so many good people still in the world – complete and total strangers, with no idea how or if they even voted – and it made me think of the things that I can do to help try to see that light among the darkness…
- Be kind to people, especially those who I’ve never met … because why not?
- Heaven forbid I witness something, be the person who steps forward to call out bigotry and not the one who turns a blind eye.
- Don’t allow myself to become complacent should these bad stories continue to surface.
- Use this passion for what’s right to make good art, whether it’s humor or editorials or just my own processing, and encourage my colleagues who strive to do the same.
- Look for the best in people, in society, in our future, even when all signs point to chaos. Have faith in America.