In Your Shoes: The US’ Way Forward

I’m back, mojo in tact. How about you? Had a power revelation to share after 48 hours of feeling like a hostage in my own country and skin, with shades of fear connected to victimhood swimming at the edges of every emotion like a shark. But I woke up this morning, the shark was gone, my skin was my own, and I can see how today is a brand new day.

Here’s where it all took me, by way of offering you a new open window of possibility to consider:

I guess us lucky people here in the US we should probably apologize to the rest of the world. For our coming late to the game in what real fear looks like. So on behalf of my countrymen and women, world? I’m sorry. Our fear is real, but we are relatively young and on our way to learning an important lesson.

I am sorry to you who more often than not live every day in fear of having new walls built, your basic rights taken away, and being authentically questioned and rejected outright for your opinions, sexuality, nationality, political or religious views, or for simply being a migrant forced from your own homeland in order to survive, because of the terror we can’t seem to quit collectively.

I now realize that people in the United States, no matter their political feelings, are socially, economically, and politically naïve as a populace compared to the freedom struggles and nation state atrocities that you must endure daily. We have been taking too many things for granted for too long and we failed to truly evolve internally as people to match the bravado of our democracy and its every opportunity.

It’s time we took our wake up call medicine, US, like the kind the rest of the world swallows on a daily basis – in Mexico or the Middle East or China and Africa – let this be the catalyst to a new understanding, to fuel a new compassion that should be our tools to a completely new outcome for ourselves, an outcome of understanding and coming together that could have the force of accelerating how quickly the world might find peace.

For if we don’t do it ourselves here in the US, and we can’t walk our own talk, what hope do we possibly have of changing minds and hearts beyond our borders?

I’m a bit embarrassed by the fact that it’s only now that truth is truly settling in myself. And how uncertain was my resolve that I am not a victim, that no matter who the President is, I am still me and I have the Constitution and my state’s rules of law on my side. The protestors have given me pause to remember that voice is alive and well, and we have recall and recourse tools at our disposal. And I am a warrior, always have been.

Perhaps all of this Trump experience is exactly what we freedom-lovers are supposed to have, and it could very well have an effect of moving people forward in the long run, of accelerating a conversation about healing, compassion and understanding about the current state of Democracy here and around the world. If we choose that to be the truth.

How arrogant and somewhat selfish of us to think that we were mature and seasoned to what true democracy really means? I am imagining the balance of the world – you friends beyond our borders – are wondering what in the world is wrong with us right now. I know you have come to this same place long ago.

In the end, we’re just human beings sitting on a great big blue marble in the sky, asking our brothers and sisters to love us and themselves. Perhaps that starts by a calibration of our own self love, a love that begins with respecting the experiences and fears of others because when we do, we give equal meaning to both, and that is where real progress lives.

I have a deeper appreciation for not only other people’s pain, but the truth of my own.

It is very different to stand in a place that is exactly like your neighbors. And humbling to discover that in this country we still have significant rights and privileges that most in the world do not, and that includes choosing not to be a victim to one person, which means we have the privilege to change the course.

Nobody ever said growing up would be painless. But that’s the bargain of being human and living in a world where personal freedoms and the potential to be something greater than ourselves is not just a fancy thing we put on Memes and share on social networks:

These are our inalienable human rights. It’s time this country took that yoke of responsibility seriously.

I’m in. You?

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