Executive powers wielded like a sledgehammer, scientists censored and silenced, refugees and returning residents detained, and language suppressed.
AND… I know that anxiety and worry will add absolutely nothing to the positive outcomes I want to see for all people in the world.
(Don’t believe me? Tell me the last time anxiety actually got something good to happen)
I decline the invitation to participate in the fear.
I’m seeing plenty of inspiring activist initiatives that light me up, and I’ll continue to participate, and to share them publicly.
AND … I’ve decided it’s time to thank Donald Trump and the alt right movement.
Seven things I’m appreciating, as an act of subversion
1. Thank you for inspiring conversations within the women’s movement that needed to happen, so that Western feminism might at last become truly inclusive. Thank you for a new word in my vocabulary – intersectionality (and if you think I’m blushingly sheepish that I’d never heard it before, you’d be right). And THANK YOU for helping to politicise young feminists – both women and men – to create the basis for a radically different future.
2. Thank you for triggering the proposal for an alternative fund for NGOs who educate on or provide abortions in developing nations – because one day I will be able to donate and provide direct support. I like the idea that one day my contribution will directly save the lives of women and little girls.
3. Thank you for a brand new day in the world of investigative journalism, where we see major reputable publications talking about collaboration rather than competition, so we will see a pooling of resources when it comes to crucial information. Thank you for being so hostile with the media, and opening the door for professional journalists to reconnect with aspects of their craft, such as research which goes beyond simply parroting a press release. And thank you for the unthinkable but glorious moment when we saw Fox News defending CNN.
4. Thank you for creating the toxic censorship situation which has inspired scientists to set up alternative ways to share research with the world. I’m literally living at a time when I can follow the rebel alliance of EPA and NASA and the National Parks Service and many others. Thank you for reminding us how much we value science, by making us feel perhaps science itself is at risk. Thank you for being so blatant with your attacks on the hard-working folks in white lab coats. Thank you for the opportunity to be even more vocal in our appreciation of them.
5. Thank you for letting us experience the awesome generosity of lawyers and others, who are dropping everything to rush to the aid of people caught up in the implementation of drastic immigration changes. This is a whole new level of focusing on the helpers in the face of devastation and hardship.
6. Thank you for my dear friend, who posted her dismay and heartbreak at seeing refugees detained at airports – and announced that she’s been inspired to join ACLU. Not merely donate, but join. Bullying “leaders” (presidents, managers or priests) can become the catalyst for a community to set aside differences and come together in the common cause of decency and compassion. Thank you, DT and your administration, for swelling the ranks of the ACLU, and for helping galvanise the groundswell of compassion in the USA. Even if it’s by just one person, thank you.
7. And finally, but perhaps most personally important to me – thank you for creating an opportunity for some painful yet essential conversations in spiritual circles, as we are invited (some might say forced) to ask ourselves difficult questions. Like, do our beliefs have as much room for inclusivity as we tell ourselves they do? And are we truly free from judgement, or have our beliefs hardened into unyielding dogma? And how we can have these conversation without shaming or anger or smug judgement of each other?
Mr Trump, I don’t suppose for a moment you expected appreciation from this committed liberal born-again-hippy. But since I get to decide whether to fear you or appreciate you, I’m choosing the latter. And while I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t be a fan of exactly WHAT I’m appreciating, the good news is – you don’t get a say in how I choose to appreciate.
And I’m not leaving it at this list. I’ll be actively seeking out more. The more scary headlines and pain and suffering you create, the more I will be looking for the silver lining. There will always be one to find, in the ways that humans express love and decency and compassion. Because at the end of the day, that’s what every item on my list is about.
I’ve made a commitment to my FB crowd that I will post AT LEAST one article a day, and I’m using the hashtag #subversiveappreciation.
I can tell you now, this decision has me fired up and ready to go, and provides me with a clear vision of what our world could be like.
I’m training my brain to find the ways I can take inspired action to become part of the change I seek.
I’m lifting my vibration each time I explore and seek out the amazing ways people are stepping up to be the helper.
So, gentle reader … want to join me?