Dear Long Lost Friend

long-lost-friend
Image fromThe Grove. Image Description: Many photos are clipped onto three strings, all of them out of focus except for one with two people in it.

Dear Long Lost Friend,

It’s been a while, how are you? I’ve begun this letter more times than I’d like to admit and I worry this one might not make admitting it any easier.

I guess I’m apprehensive because I am both extremely sorry and not sorry whatsoever for having lost touch. I am sorry because friends are hard to come by. I didn’t know that back when we were a “we”. I didn’t even know after we stopped being a “we”. I only recently figured it out when I realised just how little plural pronouns apply to me. I pride myself with how well I know where my two feet stand but it is still very saddening to realise they stand alone. I hope you have not gone through the same experience.

But I am also not sorry because communication has always been a two-way street. I don’t blame you, of course, because that would be hypocritical and to be frank, I never yearned for a message, until now. I’m not sorry because I had a life to live. I don’t have to explain how irreplaceable physical presence can be and the difficulties the lack of it poses. I’ve done well for myself. I’ve stepped out of the bubble of youth constructed by seemingly all-knowing adults at the same time as you but in a different direction, headed to become one of the all-knowers. Of course I haven’t yet or maybe I have and I just don’t know (ironically). My age is supposedly the indicator of this but then again it only quantifies my existence without acknowledging my existence at all.

If we are still alike, I’m sure you’ll understand my “sorry not sorry” status. How funny would it be if that phrase were made by a nostalgic all-knower instead of a meme-loving teen? Either way, it fits. And I hope you feel the same, for the sake of our past alikeness and possible reunion.

But if you don’t, I understand too. You see, this letter isn’t for just anyone. It’s for you. I miss you, dare I say, I don’t know you at all. I guess it is more accurate to say I miss who you were and what that made us. Do you remember when you swung across the river on a rope and jumped right onto me in the waters below? I think about that a lot. It should’ve hurt, if anyone were around they would’ve dove right in to save us, but it didn’t. We were light as feathers, perhaps because of the water lifting us or the sheer joy lifting our spirits and bodies alike. That’s what I miss. I change my mind, that memory is still a part of you, like it is me, so saying I miss you is okay, is right. I miss you. And I miss youth.

Tell me how you are, if you feel like it. I’d love to know. If not, that’s okay too. Thank you, and I mean this wholeheartedly, for making my past plural. I’ll cherish the memories like I have been for years. You really were, and I’m sure still are, one of a kind.

Sincerely,

A Letter Per Person

Advertisements

Dear Trump Supporters

c3wku2cvyaaredz
Image taken from Twitter @hankgreenImage Description: A determined looking Statue of Liberty holding a scared-looking young Muslim Girl who is holding the Flame of Liberty up high, in front of the American flag.

Dear Trump Supporters,

He’s coming for you. You are next.

You are not safe if your neighbours, teachers, friends, colleagues aren’t safe. You are not safe if everyone is not safe.

Right now he is going after Muslims. You might be okay with that.

He will go after immigrants and refugees. You might be okay with that.

He will go after Native Americans. You might be okay with that.

He will go after African Americans. You might be okay with that.

He will go after women. You might be okay with that.

He will go after LGBTQ+ community. You might be okay with that.

He will go after all these people and more. You might be okay with that.

But then he will go after you. You won’t be okay with that.

He may come for your job and income, you health insurance, your human rights, your everything and anything. He will come for you.

If you think you are safe because you support him and you don’t* identify with any of the groups I’ve mentioned earlier, you are severely mistaken.

If you think you are safe because you support him as a white American republican with Christian values in the upper class, you are severely mistaken.

You are not safe just because you voted for him. He doesn’t know that and frankly, even if he did it wouldn’t matter because you don’t matter to him. The only person that matters to him is himself. The only person that isn’t on his target list is himself.

He will come for you. You need to stand up for those being targeted right now. If not for them, then for yourself because you are next. If you don’t stand up for others now, there will be no one to stand up when you are the target. And let me warn you, nobody will be there not because they didn’t want to be but because they couldn’t, because they’ve been stripped of their rights and freedom to do so by the very person you supported.

Your privilege is not a safeguard from him. Your privilege is time, a delay before he turns to you. And with that privilege, you can make sure you and everyone else become and stay safe.

He will come for you.

Stand up now.

Sincerely,

A Letter Per Person

*And let me clarify, even if you support him and identify with these groups you are not safe from his selfish abuse of power:

If you think because you support him as a Muslim you and your loved ones will be able to come and go as you please into/out of America, you are severely mistaken.

If you think because you support him as an immigrant and/or refugee you will have priority in beginning a new life in America, you are severely mistaken.

If you think because you support him as an African American you are safe from hate crimes and racism, you are severely mistaken.

If you think because you support him as a woman you will have total control of your body and have access to legal and safe abortion, you are severely mistaken.

If you think because you support him as a member of the LGBTQ+ community you can legally marry whoever you desire, you are severely mistaken.

 Nobody is safe in “his America”.

Dear Muslim Friends

285701304-en_20th_thumbnail_jn_quote
Image from QuotesGram. Image Description: A quote that says “As with all human rights violations, breaking the silence is the first step. by Jessica Neuwirth” is written on a white background. 

Dear Muslim Friends,

I am so sorry for the state that our world is in. I am speaking particularly about the Muslim ban Donald Trump has signed but this is for all of you all around the world.

I really truly am sorry at how little society has changed. I am so sorry that you and so many other minority groups have to pay for this lack of growth. I genuinely am sorry.

But I am also extremely angry. I had initially written “and angry” after every time I apologized in this letter. The only reason I deleted them was because it was far more important for me that you knew I am first hurting with you. My sorrow is a reaction to what you are facing but my anger is my response. My anger fuels my action to help you.

I am not a Muslim and I will not pretend to know what you are going through. As a non-Muslim, I can only offer you my love, support, and solidarity:

  • Know you can talk to me

The best way is by direct messaging me on Twitter. I am not a professional but I am both a stranger and a friend. I can’t and won’t judge you because I don’t know you. I can and will listen because I am your friend.

  • (Re)Educate me

If I ever say anything wrong, tweet something insensitive, misunderstood anything, please let me know. I am trying to educate myself but with that often comes all sorts of misinterpretations. So please, know that I am trying and I mean no hate. You pointing these things out will help me.

  • Tell me how to do more

I am always looking for how I can do more. You are the people who know best about Islamophobia, being a minority, and victims of hate crime so you are the people who we need to listen to to understand and empathize and call for change. And so while I do my own part to understand, I would also love to know your thoughts on what we can do to stand with you, how we can stand with you, and how you want us to stand with you.

Please know you are loved. Despite bigoted “leaders” and negative media, there are people out there who love you. Don’t change your beliefs, values, and identity for those who are too close-minded to embrace the beautifully wide spectrum of humanity. You are important. You are seen. You are loved.

Sincerely,

A Letter Per Person

Dear Marchers

 

Image from New York Times, credited to Jacqueline Larma/Associated Press. Image Description: A little girl in a fully pink outfit on top of a man’s shoulder proudly holding up a sign that says “Be a President for EVERYONE” at a Women’s March in Philadelphia. Thousands of other people surround the two with their own signs.

Dear Marchers,

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

In my last letter, which was also my first, I began by thanking those who have stopped by my page. Today I start by thanking you, the Marchers.

Whatever gender you identify as, thank you for standing up for humanity. Whether you have a female loved one or not, thank you for standing up for women’s rights. Regardless of where you are marching or how many there are around you, thank you for standing up. History is watching you with bright eyes for not only believing in your voice but also the power behind it.

I hope the experience has left you proud, empowered, unafraid, inspired, and determined. I hope you looked around and saw children atop shoulders with hands gripping signs, as they one day will with their futures. I hope you heard the voice of passion roaring louder than ever, refusing to go unnoticed. I hope you felt the anger of injustice and the fortitude that comes with making right the wrong. I hope you know that your movement has and will resonate through the hearts of those who have done the same before and who are yet to have their own beat.

There are many of you and there will always continue to be more. But there are also many who would’ve loved to march but couldn’t. Please don’t ostracize them, they are just as much part of the movement as you are. They are grateful to you for standing up when they couldn’t. They may have donated to supporting organisations, they may have made signs for others to hold, and they may have spread the word about these events. You never know. Now is not the time to hate. There are many who would’ve loved to march but couldn’t, but that does not mean they haven’t left footprints alongside yours.

So thank you, Marchers. As you march, each step marks history and a future paved. And be sure that no such footprint shall fade.

Sincerely,

A Letter Per Person

P.S Here’s a link for you to see what more we can and should do: https://www.womensmarch.com/ 

And here’s a link of Women’s March photos from all over the world: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/01/21/world/womens-march-pictures.html?_r=0

Dear Reader

 

Dear Reader,

Thank you for stopping by. As you may have noticed, my motto is “Words can do a lot and a lot is what I plan to do.” I am so excited to start doing my lot in making this world a better place. If you haven’t yet seen it yet, the About page tells you about what I plan to do with these letters.

I’ve had this blog idea for quite a while now. I just couldn’t figure out when the best time would be to post my first letter. In fact, I’ve been thinking about it for months. But I’ve decided. It is now.

With Women Marches currently going on all around the world, with global citizens actively taking part in making the world a better place for all, with humanity facing life and loss everyday, there has never been a better time than now. And I’m here to do the same. I’m here to contribute to the change. I’m here to make something out of my talent with words and write out a better reality, which will one day make our future and history, with you.

So dear Reader, thank you for stopping by and I hope you’ll stay.

Sincerely,

A Letter Per Person