Submitted Date 09/13/2020

A new and frightening pandemic, social injustice, racism, peaceful protesters being teargassed and pummeled with rubber bullets, out of control police violence, hate, political fascism, greed, tyranny, intolerance, impatience, white supremacy/privilege, and now everything seems to be on fire....and 2020 isn't even over yet. It's enough to want to make you want to crawl in a black hole somewhere and pull the hole in after you. And yet, call me crazy, but I am still hopeful for the future of this great country that is ours. Without hope, to me, all is lost. I still believe that there are more decent, hard-working, loving, and hopeful people than there are not. I have noticed, however, that younger people tend to have a very different view of all that is happening right now than their older generation(s) of people have/had. I think some of that stems from the way we grew up and lived as children and even young adults in a very different time and way of life as opposed to how we are living now. I am a firm believer that the older generation(s) understand more clearly what it means to have to sacrifice and give up certain comforts we have taken for granted, all for the greater good of humanity. And we have the stories to back up that belief. But make no mistake, we are a nation made up of very spoiled people. We want what we want when we want it, waiting and patience notwithstanding.

The media and social media in particular have helped this mindset to grow exponentially. Some have taken the notion of self-indulgence to levels that are completely off the charts, even to the extreme that it endangers public safety. Some don't want to be "inconvenienced" even if it keeps us all as safe as is humanly possible to do so, which is mind-boggling to me. And then they turn it into a political statement rather than what it is: A very complicated health and safety issue with so many parts of it still unknown. Some want to completely ignore the science and insist that it's a hoax or "fake news" as our current President loves to say every other day (insert eye roll here). Tell that to the thousands of family members of the people who have DIED from this new hideous virus. Or of those family members who have had loved ones being killed every other day for DECADES now by people who should have never been given the opportunity and heavy responsibility of wearing a badge in order to "protect and serve". I dare you...to all of you who hide behind your social media page in order to further your spread of continual misinformation and ignorance thinly described as "facts" as to what is actually happening, which we have all seen and heard now, you are not only wrong but you are also cowards. It's so easy to say anything you want when you do not have to face the person you are spewing your hateful rhetoric to.

In these unprecedented and unrecognizable times, we need to unite as one people to fight against this unspeakable behavior and to bring about the change we wish to see happen every single day. We also need to uncover the truth that is buried so damn deep in the shit pile of so many so-called "facts". We can never let up. As Maya Angelou once said, "There is a world of difference between truth and facts. Facts can obscure the truth". We have to keep pushing and fighting for truth and change and not just as some random meme, or a talking point either. We need to make our voices heard loud and clear, in whatever peaceful, positive, most effective ways we can to help stop the spread of lies, propaganda, and hate. We need to support and defend all of the scientists, researchers, and doctors who have spent their lives dedicated to spending hours upon hours finding cures for the maladies of both the body and mind that are befalling us as a people. There is nothing more important right now. If people keep dying from this virus there will be no one and nothing left to fight for. Fighting against fascism, tyranny, racism, and downright cruelty as far as our humanity in the country we all live in will never be a fight not worth living, working, and yes, even perhaps dying for. But first, we have to all be healthy in body, mind, and spirit enough to do it, plus you have to care enough to want to. You have to be willing to give up comfort in order to achieve the goal. There has to be sacrifice done willingly to create a better future for our children's children. This means that you might have to engage in uncomfortable conversations. You might have to risk something, like maybe, just maybe, being wrong about something. But one thing is certain: we can never give up on fighting for the two things that I know for sure all of us desire most in this great country of ours and that is our freedom and our democracy. Because without those, there is no hope...

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Julie 🌺


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