"...the most painful part of my experience has been feeling suffocated, like I have no right to speak about how this has affected me. I hereby refuse to swallow garbage and shut up about it, and anyone who thinks I shouldn’t be sharing my story would do well to remember this: Hatred is empowered by silence." —Lauren Duca, from this timely article
*Absence of tension is not peace. We cannot further any just cause if we refuse to have hard conversations about real issues while resting comfortably in our privilege.
We are two people who don't want to be the sort "more devoted to 'order' than to justice; who prefer(s) a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice," as Martin Luther King Jr. so aptly said so many years ago (and James Baldwin** quoted in a book Kerri recently read).
We care a great deal about trails, and about this earth and the creatures on it, which includes the millions of disenfranchised and marginalized people in this country alone (and so many millions more around the world) who have suffered and continue to suffer the devastating burdens wrought by bigotry, ignorance, and hate.
We will continue to advocate for beloved outdoor spaces, yes, always, but so too will we always continue to fight against dishonesty, duplicity, hatred, and intolerance in any shape and in any place for as long as it takes. No matter how unpopular it might make us in certain circles, and no matter what it may cost us.
Doing the right thing and using your voice for good always matters, no matter who or where you are.
**If you don't know who James Baldwin is, or haven't read anything he wrote, we highly recommend you remedy that, post haste. Kerri started with No Name in the Street, and it's beautiful and heartbreaking and should be mandatory reading in high schools across this country.