Facing Our Grief

Dear friends,
How many times do our hearts have to break to be fully open? How “undone” do we need to be to start doing what needs to be done? It is so tempting to hide from the grief and sadness of the world – and some days it is necessary because the grief is just so heavy. But the problems in our world from climate peril to civil rights to racism all need us to keep showing up and to keep breaking open. NPR reported yesterday that “just 36% of Americans said they had taken concrete action to better understand racial issues after George Floyd’s killing [and] white people were the least likely to have done so, at just 30%”. I was surprised and saddened by this number. From my vantage point as the director of JRPC seeing all the BLM posters, buttons, books, shirts and stickers we are selling, it seems like racial justice is all anyone is talking and thinking about. But the world outside my bubble tells a different story. And our divisive politics is just one more way of hiding from the grief of our unjust and unworkable systems. It is not right that our BIPOC communities are shouldering the burden of change. We who have the privilege to hide from the issues must show up if change is to happen. The city of Missoula is finalizing a budget that will define our city as either willing to face the grief and make changes or continuing to hide from the issues and build walls of fear. The 1700 for Liberation (formerly BLM Missoula) is leading the effort for a more just budget. Scroll down to see how you can help – and do it today! We can grow that 30%, but we have to be willing to have our broken hearts on display, and to talk about our grief and share it in ways that cause other hearts to break and open. And we have to be willing to show up – grief and all…Betsy