This is not my first march and, it will not be my last.
I bought my ticket weeks ago, almost as soon as the march was announced.
But I must admit that my confidence has been wavering, if not my commitment . . . because it’s so very, very bad.
So much worse than I imagined or feared it would be.
In the weeks since November 8, as I read about each deplorable cabinet pick, Twitter tantrum, attack on another American hero or group of ordinary Americans, or our First Amendment, I grew more and more despondent.
Now, days away from Trump’s inauguration, and Saturday’s march, I want to remind myself just what we’re fighting against, and marching for.
Trump and company have systematically attacked—and continue to attack—the most vulnerable groups of American people: immigrants, women, LGBTQ people, people of color, and people of Muslim faith.
Although the incoming administration has made attacks on multiple peoples, they send ONE message to all Americans: Be afraid.
Be afraid because;
You are not safe.
You are not powerful.
You are not welcome.
You don’t matter.
So, if the message is One, the response must be One, too:
WE ARE NOT AFRAID OF YOU.
We are not new to your disenfranchisement, your disdain, your dismissal of us.
We know your tricks, we’re familiar with your sleights of hand.
Your coded language; “family values”, “urban communities”, “single mothers”.
Your insistence on your primacy, on your supremacy.
Your dependency on might, your exploitation of our labor for your gain.
We have, in one form or another, since we were children, been subjected to your barking mediocrity disguised as management, or as our legal or moral authority.
Reminding us who’s in charge,
and who serves.
Who wears the pants,
and who bears the children.
Who signs the paychecks,
who pays the bills.
Who holds the keys,
who wears the handcuffs.
and who is worthy of absolution.
Management is taking over.
We just elected the worst boss ever to be our Boss, big “b”.
And all the employees better STFU.
We don’t want to hear about your need for bathroom breaks, your reproductive rights, your need for healthcare, your police brutality, your right to marry, your pesky civil rights.
Shut up & get back to the assembly line.
We’ll isolate and terrorize each group, so you can’t help one another.
We’ll set fires on every porch.
We’ll divide you, so you can’t unite & organize against us.
It’s what we do, IT’S WHAT WE’VE ALWAYS DONE IN THIS COUNTRY.
So, if the tactic is to DIVIDE, the response MUST be TO UNIFY.
It MUST be to organize.
It MUST be to strive to be intersectional, in all things.
It MUST be to recognize that our greatest strength lies is our collective power.
Obama’s presidency & the passing of marriage equality didn’t solve racism or cure America’s fear of gay people.
But his two terms were a TREMENDOUS sign of progress in that direction.
Trump & Co. is a direct backlash to that progress — I know I’m not saying anything new — but what I’m affirming is this: although we feel like a number of distinct groups -– to him, to them, we are one –- and he’s lighting 100’s of fires, to keep us scrambling, disoriented, exhausted. Apart.
28 Jewish Community Centers being threatened (today’s news) is designed to make Jewish people feel under attack, and to make them withdraw to fight their own fires.
And, more importantly, to make non-Jewish people grateful it ain’t their turn today.
That’s how fascism works.
What is the unspoken threat that keeps white people silent in the face of police murdering unarmed young men and women of color?
“Be glad it’s not you.”
And I’m indicating foremost the Republican party here, but where are the Democrats?
I mean….is the Democratic Party going to let Rep. John Lewis carry ALL this country’s baggage?
Hasn’t he carried enough of this weight, long enough?
Will we, white folk, let our LGBTQ brothers & sisters, our brothers and sisters of color, continue to carry our weight?
So we can keep on pretending we’re Great?
I’ve been fighting for the rights of my gay brothers and sisters since my twenties.
And now, for my darling daughter, whom I thought I was handing a better, more hopeful future, with federally recognized marriage the law of the land.
I didn’t think it was the end of our fight, but it was the most powerful and profound starting point I could offer her.
I didn’t think this country would now stop killing black boys in the street — we didn’t — but I thought this country’s having elected the most intelligent, compassionate, competent, qualified and BLACK President, who recognized the problem, and saw those boys as himself — TWICE — was the most powerful and profound starting point we could have for ending that abuse.
I thought the horizon was in sight.
The rising sun.
And now Trump & Co. want to come and take away marriage equality?
Reverse all the progress and promise of Obama’s administration?
Nationalize Stop & Frisk?
Kill Planned Parenthood?
Demonize all Muslims?
This is not my first march. It won’t be my last.
The people, united, will never be defeated.
See you in DC.
This post was originally published on Facebook and is republished here with permission.
Photo credit: Getty Images