Our nation is in turmoil and our democracy is at risk.
The news cycle is a constant sea of trouble – pulling many of us under. With so many things to understand, to keep up with, to act on, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and turned off.
We must not shut down.
Make no mistake – the very health of our families is at risk. When the mission of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment, and its very existence is called into question, we have a serious problem. When the man set to head the EPA denies scientific fact – such as questioning the toxic harm of mercury – our kids’ health is in trouble.
When the leader of our country denies the sound and certain science of climate change, we are on a long and difficult road.
TV writer, David Slack (@slack2thefuture) recently tweeted:
“Remember sitting in history, thinking, “If I was alive then, I would’ve…” You’re alive now. Whatever you’re doing is what you would’ve done.”
This is our civil rights era. This is Silent Spring. This is the time when our kids will look back and say, “What did you do?”
This is why you will #findyourbrave.
Whenever there is a global tragedy, when my heart is breaking, and I am thinking: how on earth I will explain this to my daughters or my students – I reread the wise words of Fred Rogers:
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” To this day, especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”
Today, if you look around, you’ll see brave mothers all around you:
- Sally Yates was the latest woman, in a long line of women, who risked her job to speak up against hate, bigotry, and racism. This mother of two, spoke up to protect the vulnerable and to protect the founding values of this country. For this, she was fired.
- Federal judge and mother of two daughters, Anne Donnelly, blocked part of Trump’s executive order banning refugees and travelers from 7 predominantly Muslim countries. She granted a temporary stay for refugees detained at U.S. airports because sending them back to their home countries would have done them “irreparable harm.”
- My friend Paige Wolf, an activist and mother, goes to Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey’s office each week in Philadelphia, with hundreds of others, asking him to represent the needs of all of his constituents. Tuesdays with Toomey, has grown into a movement for the people, by the people – fighting for human rights, clean air, and strong public schools.
- Brave were the Native American mothers of Standing Rock, fighting the development of the Dakota Access Pipeline. They showed up day after day to protect their sacred lands and waterways.
#findyourbrave by joining Moms Clean Air Force, and educating yourself on the issues that affect the health and lives of families across the country.
#findyourbrave by telling your friends why you are concerned about the future of the EPA.
#findyourbrave by starting a no idling policy at your child’s schools to support clean and healthy lungs.
#findyourbrave by calling your state senators to find out what they are doing about climate change.
#findyourbrave by organizing with fellow moms when a regulation that was designed to protect health is threatened.
#findyourbrave by creating rapid response team make calls, write emails and op-eds, and visit local legislators.
#findyourbrave to show your resistance and march in the streets.
The next 4 years will be full of discomfort, challenge, and change. When we finally get our democracy back on track, we can tell our kids and grandkids how hard we fought for clean air, clean water, our national parks, and for a livable climate. In the meantime, how will you #findyourbrave?