This question has been on my mind a lot lately, in fact, ever since the election. I got married in 1969, a week before Woodstock, during the age of peace-loving hippies, political marches about the Vietnam war, Nixon, the Ted Kennedy scandal of Chappaquiddick, and the first draft lottery for the military (the main reason my ex-husband married me was to avoid the draft). I had very strict parents and a very repressed childhood as I’ve mentioned before, so I didn’t dare speak up or out. When I married I married someone exactly like my father, someone who kept me suppressed, who “gaslighted” every unique thought I ever had. I felt stupid for feeling the angst and anxiety I saw happening in the 70s. It kept me quiet. I was not the hippie, I was the quiet, obedient child and wife watching in pain. Watching the world around me on fire, watching others in pain, watching as other women, African-Americans, Native Americans, gays and lesbians and other marginalized people continued their fight for equality, and many Americans joined the protest against the ongoing war in Vietnam.
Perhaps, this is partial cause of what has happened to our society today, too many others, like me, stood quietly by and didn’t speak up. But now, I don’t have parents to quell my thoughts or my voice. I don’t have a husband to make me feel stupid or abuse my intelligence. Now I only have me to blame for not speaking out against the injustice in the world. This is the conundrum, a quiet, introvert speaking out, becoming an activist, attempting to find the words and the vocabulary she needs to express to the world who needs to listen and understand what is at stake for us all!
If anyone has studied history they can see that there are patterns that result in either success or disaster, in the rise and fall of empires. We study the personalities that help us rise to our best in the world and we see those personalities that try to deceive us and gaslight us, basically, scam us like those online dating scammers who take advantage of those desperately seeking love. Really? are there that many out there that desperate to believe and need someone else to solve their problems and will believe anything told to them? Can they not think for themselves and do the research to determine between factual news and fake news. Can’t they see what really is a stake? Their freedom! It’s not just a political party question. It’s a matter of integrity, moral ethics, moral compass, and TRUTH.
I am not a religious person but I have studied and read the Bible (many times). I particularly am fascinated by the book of Revelations and the End Times. I know it says after the Rapture that even some good people are left to endure the anti-Christ and they essentially are left to testify and tested of their faith – to testify. I feel now, I am being tested. Am I to sit back and silently let things happen as they may or am I going to speak my convictions, stand up for equality, stand up for what is right and not allow injustice without me saying something. My answer, NO!
I am learning, I will continue to learn, I will continue to gather my strength. The dragon inside me roars to be released in earnest.