If you know a teacher or have a teacher friend or relative, or your kids are headed back to school, please, please, be extra kind to those in front of the class, virtual or otherwise. Teachers are venturing into unchartered territory, still, even after those long months last Spring and this summer and even now. This year teachers are remote or hybrid or in-person or some combination of all three, and they are training for these scenarios on the go, repairing the plane while they’re flying so to speak. They need your kind words. They need your continuing support. And everyone involved in this educational system, teachers and parents and students, need to foster resilience, in spades. We all have to be ready for everything and anything that might be coming our way. As we know it will crash on us. Wondering how might we survive?
The following italicized remarks (and the title of this post) were spoken by the 45th President, at South Dakota’s 2020 Mount Rushmore Fireworks Celebration in Keystone, South Dakota on July 3rd, to 7,000 unmasked fans, with a dais of dignitaries, including his third wife. These remarks are peppered throughout this post to highlight many efforts (or rather his team of writers’ ideas and the Republican party dictating his campaign) and tactics to win re-election next November, while not discussing unemployment which is at a record high, or COVID 19 when infection cases are running right off the graft in the US. This man is on a course to bring the end of America, not a prosperous, generous, healthy, and united America, nor the one that would make my ancestors proud, but a place of fear and hate and worry for all of us who understand fact and science and reason. But I’ll let him tell you that.
Seventeen seventy-six represented the culmination of thousands of years of western civilization and the triumph not only of spirit, but of wisdom, philosophy, and reason.
And yet, as we meet here tonight, there is a growing danger that threatens every blessing our ancestors fought so hard for, struggled, they bled to secure.
Our nation is witnessing a merciless campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values, and indoctrinate our children.
As I drift along on my daily walk, the one I started during this sheltering, passing by a large expanse of water and sky, I am reminded of how slowly change comes, and when it does finally happen, it’s due to a ferocious wind driving everything out of its path. I thought of my father today, on my parents’ wedding anniversary coincidentally, as he would remind me when I was frustrated with the lack of protections afforded queer people like me, and he would state some statistic like, “just remember Oscar Wilde was found guilty of gross indecency in 1895, not that long ago, and look how far the world has come” he would add. As sweet as his history lessons were the demands of today call for vast sweeping changes effective immediately. It is not enough to recant one’s prejudices or apologize how we got here, instead, it is time to kick into the cracks and bring down the shoddy notions of the past. Racial or economic or gender or sexuality or religious or any differences can no longer dictate who gets what in this one world.