This is not about guns

I wish. But it’s sad that we’re still having this conversation.

The truth is, I’m not shocked that this happened again. And I don’t have something inspiring to say about heartbreak and loss.

I’m just devastated and pissed off.

Because this didn’t have to happen….59 concert goers did NOT have to die in Las Vegas and 49 youth did NOT have to die in Orlando and 32 students did not have to die at Virginia Tech and 26 children and teachers did NOT have to die at Sandy Hook. The list goes on. And this is just modern history. Our legacy of mass killings has its roots in colonization and slavery that, believe it or not, is much more horrific than the heartbreaking headlines of the recent past.

If it’s not time to talk about guns, when is it time?

But talk is not enough. Our work must go beyond strong words and Facebook posts. We need to do more than call Congress and demand regulation. We need systemic change that makes it impossible for the NRA to buy our democracy or pro-life lobbyists to regulate our bodies. We need to vote out our cowardly politicians and run for office ourselves.

We can’t afford to wait around for someone else to save us. It’s up to us to take our country back to where it belongs. To the people.

Because, here’s the thing…I believe WE can do better for ourselves and one another. If we believe in each other. If we get out of our comfort zones and take risks on behalf of everyone. If we step into our power and imagine better for our country.

— Kerri Kelly, founder of CTZNWELL

October 4th, 2017*

Text ACT to 64433.
Read this NYT opinion piece. It’s not long. But says so much about guns and us and our history. And with charts like this, it’s fucking devastating that we’re still debating the merits of gun legislation.


[art by @alexislafond, via @womensmarch]

We ARE pissed, but our hearts are also heavy for the more than 50 people whose lives were lost — and the hundreds more who were injured — on Sunday evening in the biggest mass shooting in America’s modern history. We ARE sending our thoughts and prayers to their mourning families, friends, and cities. But, as we do, our thoughts and prayers feel cheap. Cheap for us. For our politicians. For the families mourning. As Americans numb more and more to fatal shootings, we have to act to stop these massacres. We have to label them as terrorism, because that is what they are. We’re sick of the second amendment arguments that are misinformed. We think it’s spot on to call the NRA a terrorist group, and we’re really sick and tired of sending thoughts and prayers for lives unnecessarily and devastatingly lost. If you want to help, here are some steps you can take to support Las Vegas.

What If Guns Were As Hard To Get As Abortions?” We wonder that, too. As our government shuns conversations about gun legislation, because it’s not the time, Congress is pushing through anti-choice legislation that outlaws abortions after 20 weeks [video]. It passed in the House yesterday. Read here why this piece of legislation disproportionately impacts low-income women. And watch this doctor break it down for House Republicans who stand on the Congress floor talking about made-up stuff. You can act now to voice your opposition.


It’s difficult as humans to hold so much catastrophe and loss. We know people are struggling to summon enough empathy for this moment. We are reeling from Las Vegas and what another mass shooting says about our country’s moral compass, but we refuse to let Puerto Rico’s devastation be overshadowed. Trump showed his lack of empathy with his trip today to Puerto Rico. It’s heartbreaking to watch a man with so much power marginalize the loss of life and wellbeing for so many Americans and to see him botch recovery efforts. As many go without food and shelter and grieve the loss of their families and friends, he has made himself the victim and called out PR’s debt and laziness and its mayor’s nastiness. While Trump has been busy tweet attacking, this piece shows the hard work of PR’s mayor. Yes, that is her wading through water with a bullhorn to find people. And read this raw and honest essay on PR’s diaspora by Puerto Rican native, writing from the island, Cassandra Lopez Fradera. Baratunde Thurston is circulating a list of things that families in Puerto Rico need. It was put together by people on the ground. Help if you can. And in last week’s WELLread, we provided other ways you can donate and support in our ALL HANDS ON DECK section.


We’re listening closely to Adrienne Maree Brown’s words.

Following the 2016 election, one teacher implemented a human rights curriculum to combat hate. And Elle Hearns, black trans activist, who was instrumental in building the Black Lives Matter movement, said on Saturday at the March for Black Women that fighting transphobia depends on dismantling white supremacy.

We’re listening to Sharon Salzberg, because we know we can’t sustain constant agitation and keep fighting. John Pavlovitiz gives us “50 Reasons to Keep Going, Fighting, Loving, Resisting.” Here are “4 Self-Care Resources for Days When the World is Terrible.” And “Privileged Existential Guilt Gets Us Nowhere.”

Audre Lorde’s words are important now. Her work, Your Silence Will Not Protect You, is being published by The Guardian Bookshop. A Muslim woman, living in Australia, writes about the racism she faced when she spoke out against hatred and violence. She hoped being a “model minority” meant people of power would respect and listen to her. It didn’t. And best-selling author and spiritual educator, Carolyn Myss, has had enough.


b/c seriously.

At CTZNWELL, we work at the intersection of practice and politics, because we understand that it’s not just about what we do to change the world but how we do it. Each week, we call on the perspectives of front-line organizers and spiritual leaders to help us make sense of what’s happening in the world AND cultivate capacity to show up and be bold in the face of whatever.