Words...my ever constant friend and companion...have failed me this month. I have attempted to put my thoughts and feelings on paper, and nothing can come near the true measure of what I feel. Like many Americans, I have spent my life believing that our strength, knowledge and compassion would see us through any real tragedy that we faced. I believed that when faced with a real crisis, we would band together like any real family, and we would defeat the enemy. What do you do though, when your enemy has become entrenched in your family?
Politics and our individual interpretations of events that occur have taken the place of common sense, and until we find a common ground, America will never be the same. When the tragedy of 911 occurred, we forgot about political parties and held each other’s hands through the darkest of times. We stood tall and showed the world that America will not be taken down. We realized that when a true enemy attacks, he/she doesn’t ask your political affiliations, and those affiliations, in fact, mean very little. I was proud to be an American then and thankful for the support of an admiring world.
How did we go from that to this...watching hundreds of thousands people fall ill while we argue about masks. When did we become a country where conspiracy theories are revered rather then ridiculed. When did politics turn from protecting our country to protecting our party? When did compromise become a dirty word that shows weakness? When did getting our own way become the only way?
It is easy to pin the blame on a president who seems more interested in protecting his image than his country, but we are making a big mistake if we stop there. We can possibly blame our president for shining a light on the hatred that is growing, but we would be foolish in believing that he caused it. This hatred was silently brewing there, behind a curtain of fake smiles, and now it has been given a stage. As difficult as that is to watch though, at least we now know what we need to do.
The majority of people in America are humanitarians who want to be there for those who need help. The majority of us see the different shades of our fellow Americans, but we do not evaluate others by the amount of pigment present in their skin or their choice of partner. Unfortunately, it is the very loud minority who are gathering attention with their proudly displayed racism. The rest of us, the silent majority, have to show the world that The United States of America will stand united against hate.
Peaceful protests and well thought out boycotts will prove much stronger than violence, because it will unite everyone who is anxious to do the right thing. I worry, however, that this is not the right time to march in crowds. The difficulty of remaining socially distant under these circumstances makes me look for other ways to make a difference. Ryan Grenoble shared a story with us in Huff Post on 6/25/20 about a way we can make a difference:
“More corporate advertisers are pulling ads from Facebook for the month of July, joining the Stop Hate for Profit boycott organized last week by the Anti-Defamation League, the NAACP, Color of Change and other civil rights groups. The campaign urges advertisers to “hit pause on hate.”
The list of participating companies has grown in recent days to include The North Face, Patagonia, Arc’teryx, outdoor retailer REI, Ben & Jerry’s, Eileen Fisher, Eddie Bauer, Magnolia Pictures, Upwork, HigherRing, Dashlane and Talkspace. On Thursday, Verizon (HuffPost’s parent company) also joined the boycott.
Advertising agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners on Wednesday said it, too, will join the protest, and it encouraged its 45 clients — which include big names such as BMW, Frito-Lay, Hewlett–Packard and PepsiCo — to participate as well.
“For years, we ― and others ― have called on Facebook to change,” ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt told HuffPost of the campaign. “They have not. What matters to Facebook is profits. So if they see what a one-month pause would mean to their bottom line, then maybe they will get the message and act.”
As of today over 100 businesses have joined this movement. Hopefully, this month of lost profits will wake up Mark Zuckerberg, and I hope that you join me in supporting the businesses that are stepping up against hate.
While I have had a difficult time blogging this month, I have read several books that helped me pass the time. David Rosenfelt’s latest offering, Muzzled: An Andy Carpenter Novel, brings Andy Carpenter back for another adventure that will help you escape from your worries for a bit.
As always a complete review of this book follows my blog.