Is Sorry Enough?

From my journal for May 25, 2020

Kesaya Noda sent the Hanover Meeting listserve a link to a piece by a doctor who’s working on the Navajo Reservation.  It’s an apology to a baby girl he delivered, wearing a mask and gloves and blue plastic robe.  He apologizes for the unnatural circumstances of her birth, because of the lack of appropriate resources — clean water for hand washing — due to the broken capitalist system.  He apologizes because the baby doesn’t even get the traditional welcome and comfort that she would have had in an unbroken tribal system.  I cried by the time I got to the end, but it was a relief to cry.  I’ve been carrying the pain of the unfairness that we rich white people sit here comfortable and protected and bored, while the poor and dark-skinned are dying, and the ones who really keep us alive, health workers and farm workers and grocery employees, are risking their lives for us.

I did spend a lot of time yesterday doing lovingkindness for those who were dying alone.  And I feel angry as I throw away endless pieces of one-use plastic, and biodegradable food containers plus uneaten food that can’t be composted — not sure why, something to do with quarantine.  Meanwhile they’re pumping oil out of the ground, but don’t have any place to put it.  Full tankers sit in harbor, because rich folks aren’t driving their cars.

I guess a combination of anger and grief and frustration and helplessness is entirely appropriate.

We are seeing the failure of all the systems we’ve built up and depend upon that have separated us from the real source of our life, and are destroying the real source of our life.

This is the day that George Floyd was murdered, but I didn’t find out for 5 days.

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