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The Establishment
Letter sent on Aug 24, 2018

Don’t Let Your People Down.

Bonjour dear Establishers.

I have something difficult to admit.

To make a long, harrowing story (short)er, an old friend of mine from high school got embroiled in some heavy shit about two years ago.

He became the victim of a racist, homophobic rundown by small-town cops (my pal is gay and Cheyenne) and stands to go to jail for a long time.

(I can’t get into the details of the case, but rest assured what he’s convicted of did. not. fucking. happen.)

This is all to say that when he first told me about it I vowed to help. I didn’t have money for a private lawyer, but I wrote everyone I could think of for advice, I poured through his case, I tried to research and compile a variety of researches he could pursue for legal representation; I felt certain that the discrimination was so flagrant we would soon sort it out and clear his name.

…but slowly but surely everyone walked away. Everyone grew tired of what seemed futile. The gaping maw of the justice system seemed dead-set on devouring him and I started to feel ill at the prospect. I started to write back less and not answer his calls.

I didn’t know what to do to help and I was so scared and frustrated I abandoned him. For months.

He finally called me recently and I picked up, my stomach churning; he told me how deeply I’d hurt him. How much I’d let him down. He told me I’d been a bad friend.

I tried to explain why I’d done it; that my inability to save him, to solve the situation or help in any tangible way rendered me a coward. I was so sad at the prospect of him going to jail that I decided to not think about it at all.

In trying to protect myself I let one of my favorite people on this earth believe he didn’t matter.

He said, “I just needed you to be there.”

So I have been. And I will be.

There might be some good news soon — please cross your goddamn fingers and toes — but whether there is or there isn’t, I will be in his corner.

In lieu of magick — of being able to grant him justice — I can only love him.

Don’t let your people down.

With love + rage,
Katie Tandy
Co-founder | Creative Director

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