Ready to work?
One day this summer, I was visiting my friend Olga at her apartment in Capitol Hill. Olga is a Russian geisha who owns incredible purple dresses, smokes like Paul Newman in The Hustler, and once drilled a decorative lamp into my wall ten minutes after waking up, wearing a quilted bathrobe and looking bored.
When we lived together, we once walked two miles to a liquor store, and were tailed by a black sedan, while witnessing what we now believe was a drug deal. Throughout this entire experience, Olga was completely calm, breaking composure only when she remembered that she had ordered a pizza delivered to our house.
“It will get so COLD!” she yelled, startling a teenage boy with hair razor-ed into the shape of a lightning bolt.
Olga is also an excellent driver, which seems unfair. Could you not leave anything for the rest of us, Olga?, a more-jealous, less well-adjusted friend might ask.
On this particular day in Capitol Hill, as we were weaving in and out of traffic, barreling down the narrow side streets, I asked her, “How are you driving like this?”
She said, “Don’t get distracted. You only need to look at where you’re going. Straight ahead.”
In the wake of President-elect Trump, this is exactly what I need for everyone else to do. Don’t get distracted. Look straight ahead. Move fast.
Work you can do (an incomplete list):
Support the ACLU.
Especially for white folks:
- Show up for racial justice by attending meetings/rallies/protests (held by orgs like this one), and
- help educate other white folks about combating prejudice.
Don’t stand for hate crimes against Muslims.
Don’t live in a media bubble. Have conversations.
Work on starting a democratic dialgoue, and believe in what is possible.