Thursday, December 12, 2019

All Y’all

I read a thread on Twitter last night about what “home” really means. The phrase that struck me was this: 

You become a resident of a place by giving a shit about it, by bleeding your metaphorical blood and passion all over it, by wanting what’s best for the people around you who you don't even know. Anything else is window dressing or a castle of lies.

Specifically: wanting what’s best for the people around you who you don't even know. 

Possibly the most disturbing thing that has been exposed by our community’s brush with school redistricting is the number of people who feel it is completely fine to want the best solely for their own children or for a small subset of people who they feel are the right kind of people. Community cannot possibly thrive under those conditions. Nor, really, can democracy.

“We, the people” doesn’t mean you and your kids or you and your preferred neighborhood group. It’s a far bigger and more inclusive concept. 

In church last Sunday our new pastor talked about how the English language lacks a plural for “you” and how that distorts our view of some parts of the Bible. In some cases where we read the word “you”, she countered, it should really read “y’all”. (Or what my mother used, “you-all”.) Verses which proclaim:

If you follow my ways, you will prosper.

are not meant in an individual way, but like this:

If y’all follow my ways, all y’all will prosper.


I am not proselytizing here, unless it’s to make a case for the kind of community where people want what’s best for people they don’t even know. And this is not caring in an amorphous, touchy- feely way, but the kind of caring which is manifest in good works. In setting priorities, making promises, and keeping them.

That’s community. And that’s home.


Ice and Fire Festival Advent Calendar

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