Imagine a World without Fear
Imagine a world in where women don’t need to expect men to harass or assault them; where people of color don’t have to be afraid of police; where immigrants and refugees are treated with compassion; where every child is beloved; where non-violent methods are the normal way to settle conflict; where every government works to reduce climate change.
I imagine that world every day.
It’s been a tough few weeks here on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. More difficult than usual as we witnessed Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in the building across from FCNL’s office. The entire nation watched these two people whose private lives became public fodder. We watched as Democrats tried to determine Kavanaugh’s fitness for a lifetime role of Supreme Court Justice. Then we watched as Republicans tried at first to be polite to Dr. Blasey Ford but turned to anger and indignation, responding to Judge Kavanaugh’s protest of unfair treatment.
Integrity, truth, and fairness are values that we expect from the Supreme Court. They are values we expect from the Congress. We didn’t get that in this nomination and appointment of a supreme court justice. For Brett Kavanaugh to make this a partisan fight is a bad indicator, and for the president to make this a partisan victory further diminishes the Court.
I joined the protest outside the Supreme Court on Saturday afternoon as the Senate was voting across the street at the Capitol. There was not a “mob” present. It was a crowd of people, mostly women, who are angry and tired of being dismissed, ignored, objectified; women who want freedom from men controlling their lives. All women want safety; they want equality; they want freedom. All people want safety, equality, and freedom to live full lives. The protestors in the Senate office buildings over the past few days were not trying to “intimidate” Mitch McConnell or any other senators. They were exercising their first amendment rights, the rights guaranteed to everyone by the Constitution, the rights defended by the Supreme Court.
We can all see the fractures and brokenness in our representative government—too much money in elections; malign influence on social media; voter suppression and disenfranchisement. But if we who believe that the values of truth, integrity, justice, freedom, and peace should be the values of our government, then we must work to create that government. We can work for candidates we believe in; we can hold candidates accountable after they are elected; we can build relationships with congressional offices that allow our anger to meet humanity.
We can do more than imagine the world we seek. We can work for it every day by standing up, speaking truth and building community. My hope is renewed every day by the young women and men at FCNL and in movements across the country who are organizing, serving others and standing strong for the world they imagine. This is not a time to be jaded or to let anger or fear immobilize us; this is the time to hold fast to the pursuit of justice and to be buoyed by courage and community. Join us!