Why I Am Writing/Sharing So Much About Politics? Why now?
For those of you who have known me for even a short time, you know I usually don’t take a great interest in politics. It can be fair to say that I worry least about the government that governs best. I have my political opinions and I might occasionally show my support for some program or another, but usually, I am content to let other fret and strut their hour upon the political stage and take care of more immediate concerns.
That said, lately, my Twitter and Facebook streams have been awash with political news, comments, rants and more. Over the last 2 years I have been growing more and more angry, upset, disenchanted, vocal (insert your favorite emotion here) with my government. This has caused me to re-think my usual laissez-faire (a policy or attitude of letting things take their course, without interfering) attitudes towards politics, government and governing.
I often say that if I start talking politics then you know things have gotten really bad and that is certainly the case now. I take issue with many policies and actions of the current administration and could no longer hold off voicing some of my opinions. Lest people were mistaking my silence for support, I had to share that I did not agree and exactly why.
Taking these actions has been far more about me and my emotions than any effort to affect the outside world. I had to make it clear that I did NOT agree, I did NOT support, I did NOT assent, to the actions being taken, ostensibly, in my name and certainly with my tax dollars. IF my son ever asked me what I did during these times, I need to be able to show him where I stood on the issues and why. I guess this is my generations version of “What did you do in the war, Dad?”
I won’t reiterate my opinions on issues here. If you wish to see them, visit any of my social media feeds and it will be clear. Rather I wanted to explain a little bit about why my political side has popped up, unbidden, like a large groundhog surveying his plot. When the noise grows too loud, we must all stick our head out and take stock of what is going on.
Here are a few quotes that have led me to speak out…
“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor” – Desmond Tutu
“We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented” – Elie Wiesel
“Washing one’s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral” – Paulo Freire
“The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict…[an individual] who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it” – Martin Luther King Jr.
After reading these I found that I was no longer able to remain neutral, ignorant, dismissive or amoral about what is happening in our country and our world today. The time has come to take sides and I, in my own small, small, small, way, have done just that.
No one knows what the future will bring, but at least I know that I said what I believed and I stood up for those opinions whatever happens.