Dear Friends,

“We are marching in the light of God.” It is a freedom song from South Africa.

We always need to march because freedom always needs to come.   Whenever anyone in the world is not free, neither are any of us.

This past week the largest march and protest in our nation occurred on January 20th.  500,000 marched in Washington D.C. Southminster elder, Cynthia Bartholomew was one of that number. Another 500,000 marched in Los Angeles. We marched all over the country, all over the world, on every continent, even Antarctica recorded 36 marchers!

In Portland estimates between 70,000 and 100,000 marched in the rain in the light of God. Many from Southminster were there.

What did it mean?

Everyone who marched must answer that for herself or himself.  I marched because I wanted to stand in solidarity with the women in my life.  We just inaugurated a president who said on tape:

Trump: I moved on her, actually. You know, she was down on Palm Beach. I moved on her, and I failed. I’ll admit it.

 Unknown: Whoa.

Trump: I did try and fuck her. She was married.

 Unknown: That’s huge news.

 Trump: No, no, Nancy. No, this was [unintelligible] — and I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping.

 She wanted to get some furniture. I said, “I’ll show you where they have some nice furniture.” I took her out furniture —

 I moved on her like a bitch. But I couldn’t get there. And she was married. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look…..

“Trump: Yeah, that’s her. With the gold. I better use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her. You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.

 Bush: Whatever you want.

 Trump: Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.   

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/08/us/donald-trump-tape-transcript.html?_r=0

 

If you are offended that I re-posted this in the church newsletter, good.  So am I.  I am even more offended that as more than one person had pointed out after his election:  “I am dismayed that sexual assault was not a deal-breaker.”

President Trump’s conversation partner in that tape, Billy Bush, was fired because of it.   As for Donald Trump?  He was elected leader of the free world.

What’s done is done. No more crying over that.

So what do we do?

We march. We march to resist a culture that normalizes and excuses this behavior.    “Boys will be boys.” “It’s just locker room talk.”

We march to resist the movement to make people “other.”

What this women’s march meant to me is that people are serious about taking actions to make America not great, but decent, not isolated, but engaged, not phobic but courageous.

We have a lot of work to do.  We can’t do everything.  But each of us can do something.

We can connect.  We can connect with someone we may not know because of barriers of race or religion.  We can befriend those who are especially vulnerable.  We can make a friend with our Muslim neighbor or a person of color or our queer neighbor.

We can educate ourselves about racism and sexism.  We can move into uncomfortable spaces.  We can do that.

This isn’t about politics.  This is about who we are.  This is about building the Beloved Community.

 

Blessed Be,

John