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Monday, March 20, 2017

Beyond the Pink Pussy Cat Hats

There is still more to do.

I want to see pink pussycat hats at the science march on April 22nd, and the tax march on April 15th, and I want to see them standing outside Mosques and Synagogues with signs that say "We stand with you" and "You are welcome here". I want to see them worn at "Black Lives Matter" rallies, and marches to support the LGBTQ community.

Justice is for everyone.  Truth is for everyone.  And this country has enough to go around.

There are mornings I wake up and read the news and just want to crawl back into bed.  I understand feeling overwhelmed.  And I know that a lot of the women who have worn pink pussy cat hats have less at stake than others.  It's also tempting to have an intersectionality score card.  Having the time to argue about how much oppression you've faced is generally a sign of privilege.  The idea isn't to jockey for the position of "worst off".  There's a whole heck of a lot of difference between personal misfortune and systematic oppression, and having a list doesn't grant you the right to shut others out in your quest for a better America.

A better America includes equality and fairness for everyone.  You don't get less rights because you aren't taking away someone else's rights.  Human rights are not pie.  It's not about beating your brothers and sisters to the biggest slice.

And that's exactly where Trump supporters go wrong, and what we have to get across to them.  So many of the far right, especially those with white supremacist leanings, tend to think that somehow recognizing the human rights of others deprives them of something.  They can only feel supreme when they have someone to look down on.  Oddly, many of these people are Christian, and use religion to justify their contempt of others.

Even within the left there are people who are willing to make exceptions on who should be considered equal to them, because they are not fully enlightened, that they are still living in the darkness of judgement, which is the byproduct of a society that has systematically dehumanized various populations from it's very conception.  They are still picking and choosing, some saying Black Lives Matter while also saying that they are against gay marriage and gay rights.  Some support the Jewish population, but not the Muslims.  And of course some know exactly which "aliens" they want to deport.

For some reason, it's very easy for human beings to look at each other and see race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual preference, and a host of other characteristics, without seeing the HUMAN BEING.

Ultimately, however, we're all in this together, and we'll sink or swim together.  Even with the diversity of our beliefs, our languages, our cultures, if we cannot work together in this country or in this world, we will fail as a society.  We will have cut off the diversity of innovation and creativity, we would lose our most valuable resource in the variety of ideas and skills.  If we are at odds, we may even continue to lose lives.

The Woman's March was an amazing thing, and there are many amazing displays of concern and support around the nation as the government continues to try to divide us and strip us of rights, of our land, of our clean air and water, of health care, and of dignity.  But it's not all over with one march, with one song, with one slogan.  Not until there truly is liberty and justice for all.