kathy bagioni

Color outside the lines . . .

Hope in the time of unrest

Written By: kathybagioni - Jun• 05•20
My Garden tis of Thee, Kathy Bagioni, 1986

The events of these past weeks have left me horrified, sad, numb, weepy, and frightened. I was so angry at times I could not put my pain into words. But someone said to me, “You need to find your words. White ladies don’t have the luxury of being so mad we forget our words. Find your words and use them.” They were right. I am a privileged white woman with a comfortable life and I need to step up. I need to add my words to others’. 

But it’s hard.

It is hard to say to oneself, “Look for the helpers.” When the helpers I know are being gassed and beaten in the streets. When clergy are driven from their churchyard.  

When friends that have been so strident about protecting their 2nd Amendment rights are glaringly silent and seem to forget about our 1st Amendment rights.

When I have trusted police officers all my life with many positive encounters. And then I see reports about police using armed force against old men… and journalists just doing their jobs… and peaceful protestors… and clergy.

It’s hard.

And, then I see the young people. They have fresh ideas about voting reform, and city reform, and education methods, and police reform. They are moving forward. They are volunteering and organizing. They are registering to vote. They are marching. They have a new point of view.  

Protest march in Newington, CT, June 4, 2020.

And I read messages like this one, A Black Mother’s Perspective on Race Relations, with caring, peace-filled, tempered responses when the message could have been (justified) angry or pain-filled or tired.

And it gives me hope.  

So I will try to do better. I will support my friends and make new ones. Read new books. I will ask questions and have hard conversations. Look inside and change attitudes.  Support local businesses and seek out new ones, especially those run by POC. Advocate for those that can’t. And I will not be silent in order to be polite.

And I will make art because … that’s what I do.  

Over 30 years ago I made the quilt at the top of this post. Called “My Garden tis of Thee”, its message is still relevant today.

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