What Do We Do Now?

Clay Aiken and Sunny Hostin from ABC’s The View, visited Iowa City’s West High School to talk to youth about how they feel about the state of the union, the elections, and days that follow.  CLICK HERE TO VIEW

I don’t think that their reactions, and experiences are all that different from what many adults are facing today.  I was hoping that January 20th would happen, and things were start to become more normal, more routine, and closer to a comfort zone for us all. Comfort, we do far less growing when we are comfortable than we do when we are out of our comfort zone.

The Women, and others, who assembled around the world made a huge statement. We are VERY divided. We are VERY polarized. We are a nation that VERY hurt.

What do we do now? As a pastor, a leader in the community, an activist, and an advocate, I don’t have a simple solution or answer. I know it begins with each of us waking up, and helping others wake up. We need to vote, we need to voice our opinion EVERY SINGLE TIME we can, and should. We are empowered by the laws of this land, and yet we let others use them against us.

We must stand up. We must speak up. We must voice our opinions. We are better, stronger, and so powerful together. This is a type of civil war if you will. At stake is religious freedom, freedom from religious persecution, marriage equality, freedom from religious discrimination and hate, womens bodys and health, citizenship and deportation/entry status, and some of the most fundamental freedoms and civil rights that have been achieved in the last 100 years.

Things are not okay. Not everyone feels safe. People are scared. This is not hype, fake news, this is fact.

To those who face persecution, oppression, violence, discrimination, and may fear for your life, safety, or status in this country because you are Muslim: I am sorry. I love you. I need you.

To those who face persecution, oppression, violence, discrimination, and may fear for your life, safety, or status in this country because you are women, or gender identities: I am sorry. I love you. I need you.

To those who face persecution, oppression, violence, discrimination, and may fear for your life, safety, or status in this country because you, like me, identify as LGBTQ+: I am sorry. I love you. I need you.

To those who face persecution, oppression, violence, discrimination, and may fear for your life, safety, or status in this country because of your immigration or naturalization status: I am sorry. I love you. I need you.

To people who do not understand why some people do not feel safe, who are upset that not everyone is embracing the new President, who want “others” to get over it and move on: I challenge you to be part of the solution and not a continuation of the systemic problem!

To us all: We are better together. I understand that change is scary. I understand that change is something that many of us are hungry for. I know that the change I want may not be identical to yours, and that is okay. No one that I know is interested in losing rights, in losing equity, or in losing freedom.

I will fight with you and for you to insure you have freedom, safety, equity, and not losing rights. I hope you will do the same for me. I will fight anyone whose beliefs, and, or political agenda affects freedom, safety, equity, or the loss of rights for others.

Where can you turn to? How can you help? Want to get involved? Here is a great list to start with…

PFLAG Chapters
ACLU Chapters
Anti Defamation League
Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation
National Organization for Women
Planned Parenthood
Lambda Legal
Council on American-Islamic Relations
NAACP
International Refugee Assistance Project
Southern Poverty Law Center
National Center for Transgender Equality

Chaplain Royal Carleton
Inclusive Life Center and Chapel
4501 S 96th Street Omaha, NE 68127
www.inclusivelife.org
info@inclusivelife.org

2017-01-23T09:26:29+00:00