I just snuggled you and put you down to sleep for the night. Then I checked the news. Our country is in a really weird spot right now. In all of my life, I have never witnessed this level of division and extremism in our country. Instead of continuing to read news story after news story, I decided to take a step back and process all of this via a letter to you. I am sharing it on our blog to help tie what we are working on via this writing project to the current political situation.
I’ve never really been interested in politics as a whole, I have always just picked the causes I believe in and acted to support them however I could. Our country just elected Donald Trump as president and in his first week in office he has signed several executive orders and taken other steps that have the potential to impact a lot of what is important to me and our family. This includes banning people from our country who have the right to be here via visas and green cards, silencing government agencies, threatening women’s rights and defunding important programs related to science, public radio, animal protections and our National Parks. There are a lot of other people in his administration who support his actions as well as those who are opposed. Everything is happening at break-neck speed and seemingly, without due consideration. While the outcomes of these actions haven’t all come to fruition (some are just proposals and bills awaiting due process), some are starting to adversely impact the lives of those in our community.
Whenever something like this happens, I try to take it all in, sort out the facts, determine what can be done about it and then act and reflect. In this situation, there is so much happening so fast, its hard to keep up. I feel like I am on the phone with our representatives, writing a letter or email, researching news stories, donating money or signing a petition every day. I am prepared to fight and act to keep you and your rights safe as well as protect the things that I hope you get to enjoy during your life. It is just hard to figure out what to do to help out. You and our family are the most important thing to me and I will do everything I can to make sure that you get to live in the same wonderful country that I have been able to live in.
There will always be people on differing sides of any issue. This is a good thing. Embrace it. Stick up for what you believe but respect others views as well. Educate yourself in what you care about – and keep up with it! Be a loud voice and actor for your passions. Respect opposing beliefs and constantly challenge your own. Work with people. Realize that living at either end of the extremes is a very dangerous place to stay. People and their rights are important. Not every country in the world has the freedoms that we do and we need to fight to keep it that way.
I have found that creative solutions derived from the collaboration of great, passionate minds are usually what delivers the best result to any problem or unknown situation. This is why your dad and I care so much about inspiring you to be creative. It is about learning how to work with others to think outside of the box and come up with new and better ways to move our country and our world forward. I feel that our country’s current leadership is pushing an extremist agenda for a lot of important topics. Instead of taking in all of the facts, evaluating and determining what makes sense based on the beliefs of the constituents, our leader is trying to make fast, sweeping changes without fully considering impacts or a proper implementation plan. There are a significant number of people who are resorting to blame, bullying, trolling and violence rather than making meaningful, targeted steps and acting with kindness and respect. Luckily, I also know creative minds and courageous people who are educated on the facts of the current situation are currently working on solutions that will help drive progress for all Americans, not just one party or the other.
In this time where it seems so much is in the air, I will be picking and choosing what I can do so I don’t get lost in the noise. Your dad and I will be attempting to build an environment for you where you feel safe and inspired to be creative, make mistakes, learn from your actions and develop your own passions. We will also be fighting to make sure that our current administration doesn’t gravely affect the world you will come to know. I will fight to stay in the know and help you to be educated on the things you and your generation will face so you can make decisions and take action for yourself.
Ultimately, we love you and always will. In this crazy time, we will put our minds together and try to figure out a way to help drive progress for our country and the address the areas we feel need attention and protection. At the same time we will help teach you how to think creatively and respect others – as I believe that is what it is going to take to cut through the noise of what is happening and make a real difference.