At a time when many of us have been feeling disheartened and disempowered, no more encouraging sign of solidarity and strength in the face of bigotry and prejudice has been offered than the Women’s March on Washington and the “sister” marches that occurred all across the country on January 21, the day after Inauguration Day. Together, they formed the largest single demonstration of dissent in the history of our country.
Regrettably, I was not able to attend a march, but I did see the videos and the photographs that were posted on social media. I can’t tell you how encouraged I was by this display of strength and solidarity in the face of a series of statements of derision that have come from the man who won the election to become our 45th President.
Since then, a series of actions have caused great concern among our citizens. Most recently this has come in the form of a ban on refugees seeking sanctuary in our country from horrific treatment in their own countries. Refugees from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen are barred from entry because of concerns about terrorism. It is significant that NO acts of terrorism have been committed by refugees from these countries. At the same time, no travel ban has been placed on those from countries such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia, though natives of those countries have engaged in terrorist acts. Some find it significant that our newly elected President has business interest in the latter countries and none in the list of “banned” countries.
Women turned out by the millions on January 21 to make it clear that they will stand up for their right to be treated as equals and for their concerns to be taken seriously. As I write, my friends in the LGBTQ community are fearful that the rights they fought so hard for and treasure so greatly may be taken away. The silver lining amidst all these concerns is the fact that they have acted as stimuli for action in a way that is unprecedented in our recent history.
In the first seven weeks of this year, we Unitarian Universalists of Bowling Green have been paying particular attention to our seven principles and the values that they hold. We affirm and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person; justice equity and compassion in human relations; and acceptance of one another. These are the principles that spur us to action in times of crisis and confusion. These are the principles that dictate that we must and will be involved in world affairs on behalf of those whose human dignity is threatened and sometimes stripped away.
Last week I attended the monthly meeting of the local chapter of a grassroots citizens’ group called Kentuckians for the Commonwealth. When I last attended, some two years ago, there were about 7 or 8 in attendance. At the January meeting, I counted 41! There is a huge groundswell in actions for social justice in Bowling Green, and we are hoping that everyone who attends our church will be involved in one way or another. See the list below.
On Monday, January 30, several of us met at the Warren County Library to send out postcards in protest of some of the President’s choices for cabinet members; others of us attended a presentation on educational reform at a public forum featuring State Senator Mike Wilson.
There are many opportunities to get involved in issues of social justice. Let this time of confusion become a time of clarity; realize that the antidote for isolation is in community. Join us as we seek, in oh, so many ways, to create a world that embodies our cherished values.
See you at church and in the community,
|Thu 2 Feb
|Resistance Training at the Foundry Christian Community Center, 531 W. 11th Ave, Bowling Green. Sponsored by KFTC|
|Sat 4 Feb
|Unity Walk and Vigil from First Christian Church, 1106 State Street to Christ Episcopal Church (CEC), 1215 State St.|
|Mon 13 Feb
|BG Fairness Monthly Meeting
Cherry Hall, WKU.
|Tue 14 Feb
|The Homeless and Housing Coalition of South Central Kentucky Meeting
Wellcare (360 E. 8th St., Suite 311)
|Wed 15 Feb||A Fairness Rally Day will occur at the Statehouse in Frankfort. A carpool is being organized. E-mail email@example.com|
|Thu 16 Feb
9 am – 4 pm
|Refugee and Immigrant Day, Statehouse in Frankfort It’s your chance to show your support for and stand alongside refugees and immigrants.|
|Thu 16 Feb
|Black Lives Matter BG
1035 Kentucky St.