Friday, November 13, 2015

Waking and Seeing

Given everything happening in the world tonight--death and suffering in Paris, protests and meaningful resistance on college campuses across the US, all of it--this picture lights up the night.  At least it does for me.  It was taken in New Haven, Connecticut, this week, at a protest organized by black students and allies at Yale University.  

What is it about this picture?  Maybe it's in their eyes.  Maybe it's in the way they're taking what's happening seriously.  Maybe it's in the way they're leaning into one another--for support, solidarity, communion.  Whatever it is, these women, these men, they're alert to the opportunities at hand, awake to the pain, intent on stepping up.

And I'm grateful for that.  For their example.  For their eyes.

It's not enough to watch Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper and a legion of experts talking about how afraid we should be, and how afraid the French are, and how tomorrow could be worse, and how everything's out of control...The world got this way because we made it this way.  The violence, the inequity, the racism permeating academies and cultures: we made it this way.  There were policies implemented and choices made and governments anointed and blessed.  Pretending otherwise is to live in a dream (as Ta-Nehisi Coates writes in Between the World and Me).

It's time to wake up, see it all through the eyes of love and honesty, and repair the broken, busted world.  Only we can do that.  And we'll need eyes like theirs.

Yahoo News (c)