Monday, January 30, 2017

Day 190 DC Woman’s March-American freedom to express

My blog inspiration psychologist, Maslow, characterized “being concerned for the welfare of humanity and having democratic attitudes”  as traits of a  self-actualized person or  a person who has reached their personal best.  I strive to  reach  my personal best through trying new things.  Taking part in a march or a protest  could be in  line with this and in line with  American expression.   

Having a right to dissent, differ, question, and discuss is what I love about my America. Therefore, even though marching is outside of my comfort zone and my reasons for going may have differed from the “platform,” I decided to take part in this important means of American expression.  

 I saw an energetic but peaceful march of about a half a million people following there moral compass. I learned that  sometimes  what  is  reported in the news is  only part (the sensationalizing  part) of the picture.   I  saw  groups of people marching  for  a variety of reasons and their  signs reflected  their individual passions.  The crowd looked like America, meaning that it was a melting pot of people: men, women, both young and old and of all races and ethnicity.  I saw many women that looked like me  and I was surprised how many seemed much older.  I saw groups standing still on sidewalks quietly displaying their messages holding up there signs.

At times there was a carnival  atmosphere like a  Saturday Night Live skit but  I noticed everyone smiling.  Sometimes humor is the best way to cope or to open a discussion  when we have polarized feelings on issues. Everyone may or may not have had the same reason for  being there but everyone seemed cheerful to be a part of it.

Pittsburgh slang "Yinz" 

Like any protest, there are people and speeches that are on the "fringe" of a protest or that seem somewhat  extreme. On the other hand,  one speaker that did not get much press was  Van Jones. He represented a group called the  “love army.” He talked about using kindness and love to overcome hate (Click here to hear speech). He reminded everyone to  scrutinize  their negativity  on both sides of the political spectrum.

There were chants but the one that meant the most to me was, “This is what democracy looks like.” I love this country. Trump is our/my president. However, I don’t want to live in a place that is homogeneous and where everyone thinks alike. We have always had protest from the Boston Tea Party in 1773, to the Civil Rights and War demonstrations  in the 1960's. This  is the American freedom to express, to organize and to speak out about what  matters to you.  

sign from march
Spiritual Reflection
..If God had given you leadership ability, take the responsibly seriously. And if you have a gift of showing kindness to others, do it gladly. Do not just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. Love each with genuine affection and take delight in honoring each other. (12 Romans 8:10)

Other Sources