During a few recent moments of quiet reflection, I attempted to put pen to paper to capture some thoughts about the dynamic and distressing events locally, nationally, and globally. As the Director of an organization with a mission rooted in peace, I feel compelled to reach out to you.
Given that you are receiving this message, my plea may already align with your actions and intentions. Nonetheless, I'll say it anyway....
Please, please...take extra care during this period of heightened awareness and fear.
Take care to reaffirm and reclaim our core values and needs.
Take care to remember that as human beings, regardless of race, class, gender, or myriad other differences among us, we each need and value safety, security, connection, validation, respect, honor, and to be heard.
Take care to continually ask yourself, "How do we live together here in Whatcom County in a way that honors these values and needs?"
Take care to ask yourself, "How do we do this in light of our differences?"
It's hard. It's hard to stay open, receptive, and welcoming of perspectives that differ from our own. Yet, we must. We must find a way to live peacefully. We must find a way to ensure that every single member our community-regardless and because of our differences-feels safe, valued, and respected for the opinions and thoughts that they carry, that they honor, that they believe to be true.
Take care to stay open and curious.
Take care to recognize that another's experience different from your own is their truth. We each navigate this world with our own experience, background, influences, perceptions, and realities.
Take care to remember there are real overt and covert acts of racism, sexism, and other isms that continue to permeate daily lives and experiences of those around us. Have they changed over the years and taken different forms? Become hidden? Become more obvious? Yes, no, maybe, probably. All of it. The complexity is real.
Take care to not lose sight of the complexity and multifaceted nature of these issues, interests, and history.
Take care to create a safe space for divergent thought, and let us do it peacefully, together.
That is the future we can strive for, and we must start now.