Do Not Stand Idly By
I’ve refrained from posting much that is triggered by the state of the United States – really the world – today. Specifically, the atrocities that are beginning because of the election of Donald Trump (this will be the only time in this I use it’s name).
But today, I realize silence makes it win.
I will not be silent any longer.
This morning it used TWITTER – I’m still trying to wrap my head around that – it used twitter to announce a change in military policy. It stated that no longer would any transgender individuals be allowed to serve in our military in ANY capacity.
Are you kidding me?
Our military – the greatest military in the world – is so amazing because the people who put their lives on the line every day for you and me to enjoy our Mocha Frappuccinos while we enjoy our everything bagel with a scosh of cream cheese in our ridiculously privileged lifestyles, those people are VOLUNTEERS.
We don’t have a draft any more – or at least not an active one. We don’t force service upon anyone. These brave men and women choose to risk everything in service of your, my, and it’s unappreciative asses.
They make a sacrifice for years and sometimes they make the ultimate sacrifice – their very lives – so that we can go around every day and enjoy all the beauties of God’s green earth, largely oblivious to the horrors that are inches away from destroying all that we hold dear.
And it has now decreed that individuals who are transgender aren’t good enough to make that sacrifice?
YOU are not good enough.
YOU are not fit to shine their shoes.
YOU are undeserving of the sacrifice they willingly make every day, while you sit on high and have childish temper tantrums on the internet.
YOU are unworthy of the freedoms they ensure you have.
YOUR contemptable disdain for their private identity demonstrates your basic lack of human kindness and empathy.
And yet, tonight, those braver than brave will continue to stand watch.
They will guard our shores, our skies, and our borders of all kinds to ensure that you can continue your psychotic rantings and illogical decisions.
They will, in the words of the immortal George Orwell, ensure that “We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.”
YOU, sir, are the one who is doing harm. To this country. To these men and women. To the world.
YOU are unworthy of their sacrifice.
YOU who sit in a marble palace, handing down declarations based in ignorance.
YOU who would say if the poor have no bread, let them eat cake.
With all of your corruption, your illegal activities, your inability to understand the basic human needs we all have, should not have the power to do this, and will not have that power for long if our system of checks and balances has any functionality at all.
You disgust me on every level possible.
To my fellow Americans – I implore you: DO NOT STAND IDLY BY.
This man is out of control. Period.
His mental status is questionable on a good day. His fitness for the position in which he now sits is indisputably absent.
He is a proverbial turtle on a hitching post – clueless as to how it got there, and clueless as to what to do now.
WE MUST USE OUR VOICES!
I don’t care how you personally feel about Lesbians, Gays, Transgenders, etc – it doesn’t matter. Have you ever served? If not, would you be willing to take their place? Probably not. If you have served, particularly in active combat, can you honestly say that it would have mattered one iota if the person next to you, defending your back against insurgents was born male, female, or both? Would it have mattered if the person they wrote at home was the same gender as them? Probably not.
Do you think that this issue, and all the issues that he has caused don’t impact you? The travel ban? The attempts to remove the first steps of universal healthcare? LGBT rights? Then let me remind you of history. Before World War II began, a smooth talker came to power, and began to persecute those on the fringes of society. I won’t go through the details because you should already know them. But Pastor Martin Niemöller said it best in his immortal poem:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
It doesn’t start with an attack at mainstream society. It begins with an attack on those who are on the edges, who are vulnerable. Who don’t have the backing of the rest of us. But eventually, it will touch you too.
In the late 1960s in Chile, a movement erupted that led to a song and eventually a rallying cry of "The People, United, Will Never Be Defeated!" - we MUST be that people. We MUST unite and stand against tyranny.
Use your voice. Speak up. Speak out.
Do not stand idly by.
And for those who may read this (if they even got this far) and say I am unpatriotic or disloyal because I speak in this manner against someone who won the election (I'll leave my thoughts on that and Russians alone for now), I say this:
No, the fact that I speak up and stand up for what I believe in is the very definition of American Patriotism. We live in a country where doing the right thing is what we believe in. We live in a country where we are not obligated to bow down and pay homage to someone in power just because of the title they have. We, in fact, have a duty to each and every American to speak up when evil doers are trying to bring us down.
When this period of crisis is over - and it will eventually end - which side do you want to be on? The one that stood up for the human condition, or the one that attempted to destroy it?