Still processing here (apologizing in advance). No real safe place to talk about it in between angry finger pointing in an ever increasing us vs. them world where everyone feels superior in their own sense of being right and extremes where either the sky is falling (perhaps it will) or that their wildest dreams will come true (they will be so disillusioned). So I’m back to trying to understand who and why, even though I feel powerless to do anything about it.
I may or may not have previously referenced Hillbilly Elegy, but what I’ve read about it has been nagging at me, because I am a part of the society that is standing by and doing nothing to help. In any case, these two articles (one which also references Hillbilly Elegy) struck me in different ways today.
And the other can be found here: The real bubble is rural America, where I found this to chew on:
“When you grow up in rural America, denying rights to people is an abstract concept.”
I guess this hit close to home because these are my people. I grew up in rural America. Where I knew no minorities, no marginalized people who needed defending (although in hindsight I’m sure there were silent women who needed defending, but I was too young, too naive to recognize it).
I know what changed me was having the opportunity to get an education and to serve as a missionary in culturally diverse countries where I learned to appreciate and love people of all cultures and religions. And where I first felt the sheer helplessness of watching a man physically abuse a woman in the name of his religion and I knew it was wrong. And I knew that while I was helpless then–still really a girl on a virtually deserted street with no phone to call 911 and no bystanders to rally to assistance (although it is likely at that time and place any effort to do so would have been in vain)–I wouldn’t always be. And I knew I would not be silent.
I know that while I do deal with sexism and unconscious bias, it is nothing next to what others endure every day and becoming aware of my privilege has been a journey accelerated simply by the opportunities I was born with and with which I could have easily been born without.
And so I continue to seek to understand.