Art Every Day Month – Day 28 – What’s Going On?
My blog is for art, not politics. My own rules. It is for the communication of my visual and word art. I am changing the rules for today with the preface that I am utterly grateful that I can still write what I want, paint what I want, make what I want and live where I want without harm. So far, this is true. That said, I know this isn’t everyone’s experience and I need to use this platform with a sense of responsibility. Political statements do need to be made periodically aside from the way we live our daily lives and they need to be made in a manner that gets attention and moves us forward toward growth. That is what I aim to do here today. Because for me, now, art and politics are the same thing.
Recent news events promoting dissent (there are so many) and creating social media and pop culture frenzies are happening more and more as the decline of our culture seems to be in fast forward. We have been on a trajectory toward explosion for a very long time. The government continues with infighting, citizens act against each other in horrid ways and the economy has crippled everyone except that famous 1% and they are reluctant to share anything. The ordinary channels of change have frozen and we are being rendered powerless, or so it seems. In the face of hopelessness, I am reminded that hopelessness doesn’t really exist. We, the people of the world, make changes faster and more effectively than any government. The question now is, how?
What now? What do we say about such events as the court ruling regarding Ferguson? You know exactly what I’m talking about. I don’t even have to add the word Missouri and you know. Racism. Ferguson-Racism. Racism-Ferguson. These two words have become the icon of angry bedfellows, screaming examples of the ills of this country, the ills of the human spirit losing its way, of people viewing each other as prey, of those sworn to protect us leaving their own humanity in their uniform locker and their organizations being untruthful about them, or a body of rulers denying rights of birth to a populace that was stripped of options by the prior body of rulers. Racism, sexism, child endangerment, all of it the sickness of a society that has been dismembered. It is all the same circle. Power, and the illusion of and desire to control – these are not unrelated issues. We have been crippled by our own acceptance of the norm. You cannot know a black man was murdered when a white man wouldn’t have been, or learn that a baby has been raped, and a woman beaten into submission without wondering what you as an individual can do to end the horrors, or what your group can do to promote education and understanding of the human situation as it plays out in front of you. Can you? Can you watch without action? Without anger and without compassion? What is the part you must play in this drama because that’s what it is, a drama. It is orchestrated by “those in charge”, whether they are your spouse, your employer, your government….once you hand over the reins of your own life, this is the result. What do you do? What do we do to move us all toward healing? What does an artist do? How can we be effective in order to move us forward toward healing without more harm, more violence, and more rage? The time for silence has ended. You know it and so do I. It has begun to feel as though the work of the Greats such as Martin Luther King are in jeopardy of being wasted. Perhaps it’s simply our time to do the radical work, to continue the race, because it is a race. It is a race to preserve human rights. Our rights.
The great change makers of our society laid the groundwork that gives us a place on which to stand. But, how do we teach a younger generation the truth of their struggle? How do we teach them that history is a present that needs to be monitored and that once it becomes the past, it repeats unless we intervene? Their lives are consumed with their own economic struggle, their own fight against a darkening environment. How do we come together and breathe new life into a dying world in a manner in which the responsible parties turn, watch and change their behavior and priorities?
As a creative, as a crone, a woman of experience and wisdom, as a child of the 1960’s when the word protest was on everyone’s lips, when our actions changed history and cultural norms, I believe my following statement holds truth for my community of caring and dedicated souls, people who stand with me at this moment and issue a commitment to spend every single day learning and educating others on the fine art of personal and community salvation. My words as my art. An anthem. It is time. The clock is ticking.
We are coming for you with art that exposes your crimes against humanity, music that elevates the weary with a new mantra, and writing that questions your deeds and actions.
We are coming for you with names of the victims who died at your hand serving you and survivors who are still waiting for support. They are etched in our work.
We’re coming for you with every mother of every child killed in the streets, every father beaten by the system and every person of color maimed, dragged out of their homes and murdered or who die at our borders. The streets are covered in their blood. We are recording everything.
We’re coming for you requesting answers for denial of rights to all who have different lifestyles and beliefs. We are working to restore the concept of freedom.
We’re coming for you with a relentless desire to heal and educate, to share and search for meaning within the power of our skills, the ordinary, the talented, those who listen. We have you in our sights. Our silence is over.
We’re coming for you with names, addresses and witnesses of women raped, slaughtered or burned, their children left to starve and their dreams crushed. We list them on walls, signs, and memories.
We’re coming for you with something more powerful than guns, with multitudes walking toward you, chanting and organized, holding hands in solidarity until you admit you cannot contain us. We will not stop. We are a fluid wave of intention.
We’re coming for the self-righteous. We sing our own songs of Source. We dance to its music. It is untouchable and pure. It is not yours alone and does not kill or shun in anyone’s name.
We’re coming for you with an antidote to war, to crime through conscious communication, education and truth-seeking in spite of your spin and lies, your need for oil or tainted seeds, your greed or desire to thwart the development of others.
We’re coming for the Protectors who kill the people they are sworn to protect, for the ones who incest children and carve letters on the colors we are born with, for those who enslave. We know your names.
We’re coming to collect what is ours, our lives, our right to clean water, chemical free food, homes that are not made of cardboard, healthcare and economic dignity for all.
We’re coming in peace, in anger, in heat and cold, with dedications and memorials and in number. We walk toward you in silence, with screams. You might not see us coming.
We’re standing at your door, looking in. We see you ready, aiming. You cannot kill us. We are the mothers, fathers, and children of the world and the world is ours. We have come to claim it.
I leave you with this incredible piece of art from the late Marvin Gaye who was himself, murdered – by his father in a fit of blind rage.
Rumi and art return tomorrow