Monday, August 14, 2017

This Has Been a Test

I should be writing. I'm sitting in my chair, I'm drinking coffee and I should be writing. My head is swirling from the events of the weekend and I don't know how to start.

I went to the rally at the mall yesterday. It's there every month. It's a Black Lives Matter rally hosted by the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Columbia. I've been a few times before. There's always a stack of extra signs and you pick one if you haven't brought your own and stand along Little Patuxent Parkway.

Yesterday they ran out of signs before I got there and I was not late. The outpouring of anguish from the community to do something to speak out against the events in Charlottesville was evident as people continued to arrive and line the street. Both sides. A gentleman passed me and said, "I bet I know what you'll be writing about tomorrow."

He was right.

I can't begin to guess exactly what motivated people who hadn't been before to show up yesterday. Anger, Fear. Sadness. A desire to do something good in the face of evil. I do know that, to me, yesterday felt like one of the old Emergency Broadcasting PSA's

  • "This is a test of the Emergency Broadcast System. Broadcasters, in cooperation with the FCC and other authorities (or, in later years, "federal, state and local authorities") have developed this system to keep you informed in the event of an emergency."
  • "If this had been an actual emergency, you would have been instructed where to tune in your area for news and official information."

When do we decide it's an actual emergency?

Violent hatred isn't just whining in the basement in this country. It's on the march and taking lives. We are going to be required to put a stop to it. We will need each other. Like a family has a home evacuation plan, we will need a meet-up place and yesterday Little Patuxent Parkway was that place. 

Think of it this way:

If you've wondered what you would've done during slavery, the Holocaust, or Civil Rights're doing it now. #Charlottesville  -- Aditi Juneja 

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