Friday, February 24, 2006

Unwilling--That's Me

...to sit down and shut up that is.

I've been teetering on the brink of the high-dive for a month now preparing to take the plunge back into political commentary here on Joystory. My miniscule pool of regular readers will have noticed that I have been shying away from it since the loss of my father last September--followed quickly by two more grief wammies--which made it difficult for me on multiple levels to continue to focus intensely on the issues that I'd been obsessing on for the previous five years. Grief and guilt were a black hole that threatened to swallow what hope I had managed to cultivate. I had to take a complete hiatus from reading or watching any politics from early December thru mid to late January.

Grief needs no explaination but you might wonder, Why guilt? Well, I have explained that at length at some point last fall. I'm in too much of a rush to hunt for the link(s) right now but may try to add them later. Anyway the short version: My family are fundamentalists and, at least last I heard, starry-eyed Bush supporters. Now, even tho I broke with the religion of my childhood nearly thirteen years ago, I did not break with my family. It was, and is, a loving and close knit family. I cannot even use the word 'wingnut' in any context because whenever I see it being used, I know that those using it would include my loving family under the umbrella of that pejorative and I refuse to be a part of that. I know for a fact that these people are sane, rational, concerned, compassionate citizens. The just have a different world-view thru which they filter incoming data. They have a right to that and they have a right to be respected!

So my dilemma has been about how to deal with feelings of disloyalty as I continue to participate in the national progressive dialog. But it is about more than feelings. It is also about how to maintain my own sense of integrity. I find it hard to maintain a close relationship with those whom I cannot share nintety percent of what is occupying my heart and mind and time. And yet, I find it impossible to live with myself while denying those things that exercise my heart and mind.

The title of this post links to a post on RenaRF's On the Left Tip in which she has reminded me of what I already knew: I have no right to opt out. Because every voice counts. Because it is going to get worse before it gets better. Because it is going to take a lot of voices to tip the ballance back to a progressive agenda. Because things have been this bad--or worse--before and the only thing that precipitated change was the '...unwillingness of a group of educated and motivated people to sit down and shut up.'

Count me in as one of the unwilling. Thanks to RenaRF I am taking the plunge.

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