12 steps to a Society of Belonging:
Step 2: Believe in a power greater than the government to restore our sanity.
To paraphrase Ben Franklin; the definition of insanity is repeating the same process and expecting different results. The American Dream story is fraying…again. And everyone but a few seem to be pissed about it. We are marching, running for office and giving our resources to show our commitment to change (again). However, our government does not seem to be the best place for us to bet on change. Maybe its time to believe in a higher power?
Someone once said, “politics is a shortcut to power”, and it should be a place citizens can go to find change. However, our government is part of the insanity and it’s important we reaffirm our commitments to society and become the “adults in the room”. We must believe in the power that created governments, the people.
Policy can help shape change, but its enforcement and long term acceptance is up to us as society. Government can’t seem save us from the “isms”coming to a head (again). But we can save ourselves. Do we need policy to help us be more humane to one another?
Think about the anti eviction movements of the depression, theses were movements in many neighborhoods to stop landlords from kicking out families unemployed during the depression. Neighbors would stand around the house with the family inside and chase away the authority trying to evict families. Think of “tank man” the unidentified man who stood in front of tanks in Tiananmen Square. Think of #metoo, a place for people to relieve themselves of the shame of sexual harassment. These are actions with impact that all happened by people… folks who said.” I will stand and speak today.” The moral compass of these movements are demands for humanity regardless of what power says.
Change starts with a leap of faith, a belief that we can actually undo bias. Take a moment to ask yourself, what would it take for you to believe in society enough to intentionally build it?
Let’s choose to believe in us, to believe in our shared power to create society. Lets believe we have enough power for our complicity to affect the world. How do we create micro solutions by making our house, our neighborhood a more open place? Government is made by people who are a part of our society, they represent who we are. If we change the way we see the world our world will change. To quote paraphrase Martin Luther King jr. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that”.