Past the First Step

img_1288-2Reasons for hope abounded yesterday, here in Seattle and in cities and towns around the world—and even on a ship in Antarctica. This is why I march(ed) and this is why I continue to march today. We can and we must do this together: make America think (and resist tyranny) again. Think about this statement in de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America: “And what I find most repulsive in America is not the extreme freedom that prevails there but the shortage of any guarantee against tyranny.” (From the chapter “Tyranny of the Majority, p. 294.)

Participating in the Women’s March, either in person or in spirit, is the first step towards a safer, more socially just society. It does not end there. If you live and breathe in the United States and if you care about women’s rights, children’s rights, immigrant’s rights, LGBTQ rights, healthcare rights, environmental rights—you name it rights—it is time to take the next vitally important steps and get involved, get informed, get politically active in whatever ways you feel comfortable. And for everyone’s sakes, in ways that make you uncomfortable. Here is a link to the Women’s March on Washington’s 10 Actions in 100 Days. They make it ridiculously easy for you and your friends and family to take those next steps.

And please remember to pace yourself as you begin taking those steps. We don’t need people collapsing on the sidelines. I like this simple framework for sustained advocacy from writer-activist Mikki Halpin in her post titled “Do Something. But You Can’t Do Everything” (1-24-17):

“Here is how I would suggest you take a step back and think about how you are going to be a change maker now and in the years to come.

Think about all of the things swirling around you, all the opportunities you have to do things and act on your values and choose these three things: 

One thing to be a leader on
One thing to be a follower on
One thing to make a habit of”

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