In this increasingly intolerant, divisive and inhospitable world, that weighs really heavily on me these days, I want to share one thing, a sentiment I often share at funeral services:
Outside of our bedrock beliefs and values, all we really have is each other.
Respecting the inherent dignity of all people is a central tenant of my faith.
And when a group of people is discriminated against, mistreated, pushed to the margins, or killed for no other reason than fear or hatred, I must – and God-willing WILL – stand up for those people. I must call out injustice, advocate for equality, listen and learn from them and their experience, and protest until their safety is ensured.
These days I am overwhelmed at the nonstop barrage of intolerance, racism, and bigotry in the news… and it all boils down to fear and hatred.
There are so many groups that need our protection and advocacy these days – Black, Brown and Indigenous folks, Jewish people, members of the LGBTQIA community, Asians, differently-abled folks, Immigrants and Asylum-seekers, and the list goes on and on… If you were to walk in their shoes for a day or a week, you would understand their desperate need for the basic respect and safety that most of us are given daily without a second thought.
I must remind myself that JUSTICE is not a finite thing. Giving it to one group does not mean another group cannot have it. And although I may not be able to actively advocate for all of these groups, I am compelled to do something for some of them. I cannot take my privileged position for granted.
I hope you, too, can find some small way to commit yourself to work for the good of those who are discriminated against, denied basic dignity, and threatened.