On November 15, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the inaptly named Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2016 “with forty minutes of debate.” If passed by the Senate and subsequently signed into law, this will establish a no-fly zone over Syria. Establishing a no-fly zone is an act of war, which would (1) kill many Syrian civilians and (2) dramatically escalate probability of U.S. war with Syria’s ally, Russia.
If you’re interested in actual peace, such as is obtained not by bombs but by legitimate diplomacy, please call the members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and demand they reject this bill.
My two-year-old, Littler J, really likes to dance.
If he hears more than a couple of notes of any tune, he turns to me and asks, “Wanna dance wif me?!”
He just now busted moves with his toy pig, which made me smile as I remembered a few minutes from last night.
“Final countdown!” shouted my seven-year-old, Li’l D, as he played with Baymax, a Captain America shield, and a motorcycle.
“Final countdown,” I sang back.
“What’s that?” he asked.
“It’s an … old … song. Here, let me play it for you.”
I played the song, which he found highly unimpressive.
Autoplay moved to “Eye of the Tiger” next. (Of course it did.) Strangely, Littler barely seemed to notice.
But then? Then “Living on a Prayer” came on. Littler’s face lit up and he called, “Wanna dance wif me?!”
We bounced around the living room hand in hand until the last minute of the song, when my husband took over as Littler’s dance partner.
I surveyed the two for a moment, smiling at the wonderful, silly scene before me.
Do I wanna dance wif my boys? Why, if Earth were heaven,
I’d spend every second doing just that.
You can express outrage and demand cessation by calling any and all of the numbers below:
- White House Situation Room – 202-456-9431
- I was told they’re “monitoring the situation.” I asked that the White House actually intervene on behalf of water protectors.
- Morton County Sherriff Department – 701-328-8118
- I left a voicemail saying I’d encourage no one to ever visit North Dakota ever again if they keep attacking unarmed citizens.
- Governor Dalrymple – 701-328-8118
- Voicemail full; I was unable to leave a message
- North Dakota National Guard – 701-333-2000
- No answer outside of business hours
- Army Corps of Engineers – 202-761-8700
- I left a voicemail asking that they please take any and every action to ensure (1) no further harm to water protectors and (2) DAPL stop efforts to drill, for benefit of this land and all its people.
Please call. Please protest the abuse of people and earth for profit.
Your voice can make a difference.
Follow #NoDAPL on Twitter for up-to-the-minute information
After months of fury, I finally found my way to empathy earlier this week.
Finding it–seeking it–changed everything for me.
Doing so enabled me to find the root of my anger, followed by empathy for myself and then empathy for those with whom I’d been angry.
Read about that here.
(What’s written below is incomplete without it.)
Friends who voted for Trump: Please stand up for my husband and sons, and anyone else you witness being persecuted in the days and months ahead. I will stand up for you even as I rail against any and every injustice so much as suggested by Trump’s team.
Friends who voted for Clinton: Please stand up for my husband and sons, and anyone else you witness being persecuted in the days and months ahead.
Know that people of color–like my husband and sons–and other vulnerable citizens will bear the brunt of hostilities when fans of hate are flamed. Engaging potential allies with empathy is thus one of the most important ways you can protect more vulnerable members of society. Please stop fanning with your proclamations that everyone who voted for Trump is a bigot to be scorned.
Many people who voted for Trump are allies. I know a few personally, and know from listening to them that their votes were not cast in support of hate. Others could be allies, if approached with empathy instead of blanket condemnation. If understood as more than the sum of a single vote.
If you stand for my husband, my son, for Muslims, for hardworking immigrants, for refugees, for anyone who is currently on precarious footing as we all face a Trump presidency, you’ll practice engaging with empathy.
Please act in pursuit of peace. Protest not each other, but each and every Trump policy and action that is hateful.
Please don’t sacrifice my husband or sons to loudly condemn someone else for their vote and tell me you’re doing it for my family’s good.
We’ve all got a fight ahead, and we’ll fare better if we undertake it together.