14 Comments
Jun 5, 2020Liked by Chris La Tray

Thank you for your words, Chris, and wanted to let you know at least one of your readers is > 40 yrs old

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author

Thanks, Kate. That IS good to know.

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I hear you, and I'm trying to be a good ally by using my voice to amplify. There's a march tomorrow in my town and I'll be there. Americans need to start local.

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author

You're exactly right. I attended our protest gathering tonight and it felt good to be part of it.

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Jun 5, 2020Liked by Chris La Tray

Thank you. I love the Stacey Abrams piece. Her name on the ballot would go far.

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author

She is wonderful, yes.

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Jun 5, 2020Liked by Chris La Tray

Goddamn right. It is time to do the work. I've always been "too busy" to really get involved in politics. I'm poor, just getting by each month is more than full-time work, and that is part of the master plan of those in power. Keep us too busy trying to survive so we don't have time to even complain, let alone rise up. But I'm ready to do the work, even if that means I have to give up my Netflix, it's not that great anyway.

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author

Keeping us down IS the master plan. I'm sure you'll figure something out. It's important to keep a balance; I struggle mightily with that. Get so worked up over not doing enough that I don't do anything at all.

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founding

Well, you certainly shoved a stick into my peaceful stream and stirred up the current on this quiet birdsong morning. I can always count on you for a good rant. Thanks for this thought-provoking post!

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author

You're welcome!

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Jun 9, 2020Liked by Chris La Tray

There is nothing more racist than US wars. Did any of you woke folk protest the complete destruction of Libya by Obama, Clinton & the EU? Or the current mayhem the US has unleashed in Syria or Yemen? Stickler for Stats: 'millions-killing health crisis' - currently less than 410,000... a helluva lot less than are dying directly or indirectly because of US sanctions all across the globe. 'It's not entirely our fault.' That's what your leaders say every time they destroy another sovereign state.

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author

Do you expect me to disagree with anything you're saying? Do you know anything at all about me? Our leaders are fucked and always have been. The greatest thing the American propaganda machine has ever accomplished is convince so many people we are some shining example of truth and justice, which we aren't and never have been or care to be. "Millions-killing" was more a nod toward the potential of this virus, and as this is not journalism, I'm fine with using hyperbole in my own barely-edited space.

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Jun 5, 2020Liked by Chris La Tray

Amen. Amen, from this under-40. ;)

I want to make a plug too for doing the small things in our towns, our churches, and our families that seem non-political (but aren't), and often feel barely significant—that open minds and change hearts in the long term.

For those of us with good lines of communication open to family members who are hostile to positive change, that means talking to them. Pushing them, with all the kindness at our disposal and all the love we bear them, to think about WHY, for example, they feel so uncomfortable or angry hearing black folks insist that their lives are important. I do a lot of this with certain family members, and if anyone would like to talk about this or borrow some scripts, I am here for that. tkshepersky@yahoo.com.

Those of us with strong ties to churches or community orgs can encourage them to commit to anti-racist work, or re-commit themselves publicly if they are already friendly to the idea. I've been struggling with what I can do, as someone who doesn't do well at protests and historically burns out fast on direct political action (letter-writing campaigns, phone banking, etc.) I finally thought: you know, I'm a poet. Let's get some poetry by black folks into the white white space of my Lutheran church. And my church is all ABOUT the contemplative listening group I've proposed for that purpose. I'm writing up a plan for that group right now, and I'm fired up.

Also, I'm gonna vote like hell. Rock on, team.

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author

Thank you so much for this, Tara. Rock on indeed!

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