My previous post was on the stages of grieving the recent election. One of the things I noticed after my Dad died was that there are also different ways of grieving . . . and coping with loss and challenge. I also noticed that the average number of dumb things I did and said (and, candidly, that other people said) went up radically during the grieving period.
In the past few days, since the election trainwreck, I’ve seen, heard, and read people grieving and coping in many different ways, some of which made me annoyed or even angry. I’m trying to hold onto this bit of insight, though: we need all of us.
We need people who are mad as hell and taking to the streets.
We need policy wonks who are willing to [drink a giant vodka and pepto cocktail and] try to make semi-rational policy with the incoming administration.
We need law nerds in offices with laptops suing the crap out of anyone who violates civil rights and civil liberties. (I have to fit in somewhere, right?)
We need people who need to hear “it’s going to be OK” in order to get up in the morning and continue to do good work.
We need people who need to hear us acknowledge that it’s never ever going to be OK.
We need people to step up and step in when harassment happens. Always.
We need people documenting every single act of harassment and vandalism.
We need both those who think this is the apocalypse and those who can pull us back from the emotional brink.
We even need [flying pigs and] liberal Republicans we can work with to limit the legislative and administrative damage to specific communities.
Most of all, I think, we need to be gentle with each other here on the left and the many and various ways we’re coping and processing.
We need all of us.