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Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

Change does not happen at the ballot box or at a protest or with petitions. Change can only happen if we first work on allowing ourselves and others to be imperfect and allow ourselves to need others. Without vulnerability and self-compassion, we cannot expect fundamental change to happen. Waiting on the powerful or even the masses to do the right thing instead of you is like expecting the scorpion not to sting the turtle. (Cultural appropriation alert: In the original Persian story it was a turtle, not a frog.)

Politicians will never do more than throw us a few crumbs. They know they have the power and they know that there is little chance that they will face any consequences for ignoring protests or paying the lip service with no follow-through. In the US, there are, however, significant consequences for ignoring Department of Defense contractors (who use the huge portion of the budget and all of the corporate welfare they receive to back up threats of funding an opponent or of moving jobs out of a politician's state/district) and evangelical Christians (who represent the US’s largest voting bloc because they make up 25% of eligible voters whose voice is amplified by the electoral college and through the many forms of voter suppression that limit the voices of other, usually marginalised, groups). …

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Photo by Nick Coleman on Unsplash

tl;dr It’s usually a personality disorder designed to protect them from abuse whose aversion to trauma is so powerful that they are locked in their harmful behaviour and they should be kept at the very least at arms’ length and in conversations that have very limited scope and rigid boundaries. …

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Photo by Hari Panicker on Unsplash


Having travelled coast to coast to coast on both, with a neon Free Hugs sign no less, I have to say that Amtrak has better coach class seats on long- and short-haul trips, their short-haul routes have better food, there is more frequency and more routes, better access to major cities and the prices tend to be lower. Especially their rail passes. Also, it’s hard to beat the views and wildlife you can observe going through the Rockies, along the Pacific coast, in the Southeast AND Southwest, in the Pacific Northwest and along the Hudson River.


Arié Moyal

Founder of HugTrain, a movement (literally!!) focused on empowerment through small actions

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