Irit is executive director of the Trinity Center in Austin, which serves the homeless community. She is one of the most loving people I have ever known. Her words really speak to how far into anger and despair so many with good hearts have been driven by the current administration and its lack of compassion, empathy and caring. I appreciate her willingness to express the dark thoughts that she carries so heavily in her heart, along with glimmers of hope.
The “best in the world”?
by Irit Umani, Austin, Texas
Oh, how frustrated I am! And disappointed and angry. And mind-blown, actually.
What are we “the best in the world” at?
- All of the above?
This 4th of July was difficult for me. Was it for you too?
I did not feel celebratory about our prisons being for-profit enterprises or how many people we house in them. I was not joyous about the number of homeless people in our streets. Or about police brutality and racism in general toward people of color. I was not glad with our health care system. I felt no pride in how we care for the elderly, or in the quality of our education of kids and how many of them need food assistance.
This was a difficult Independence Day. I felt independent of nothing and dependent on everyone.
There are, however, glimmers of hope, I think. I want to go to New York and walk on the big beautiful yellow painting of Black Lives Matter in front of the Criminal’s tower. It reminds me of the record cover of the Beatles’ Abby Road; a road of hope. I believe that we might throw the self-absorbed fascist out of power come November. I think that we may learn a lot about who we are and what MUST change. I think enough of us are ready for these changes and that some changes for the better are on the way.
The bubble of The Land of the Free and the Brave has burst for me, and colorful fireworks were not enough to make me feel happy, let alone proud, to be an American. Yet my deep faith in the human potential for good is still glimmering somewhere inside.
May all beings be well.