My mom taught me to be a truth-teller. To ask questions, even when they are hard to ask. Even when you don’t want to know the answer. My Jewish faith did the same. Ask questions when they are hard to ask, think critically about the answers and ask those questions again. We never stop asking questions, and that’s a beautiful thing. I don’t accept answers that feel like they are missing something and that is a good thing.
Recently, I’ve been living off-campus from Haverford and when I drive around, I see tons of Trump campaign signs, “Drain the Swamp,” “Vote the Lockdown Liberals Out,” “Pray to End Abortion.” It’s these signs that I question, and I wish the owners of the signs would question them, too. What about Donald Trump’s lack of tax payments isn’t the “swamp”? What about Republican governors who had lockdowns like Mike Dewine of Ohio or Charlie Baker of Massachusetts? How exactly will just thinking and praying on an issue change anything when we know that it has to do with legislation and who’s on the Supreme Court? These are just a few of my questions.
Right now, I’m in a class on Nationalism. Donald Trump’s blind patriotism is nationalism. Holding up the American flag without thinking about why you’re holding it up and the decades of pain and turmoil behind the flag is nationalism. His support of white nationalism and QAnon and all of the men who tried to kill Gretchen Whitmer (I’m boiling with anger just thinking about it) is evil. Today, I opened The NY Times on my phone and I read: “QAnon Is Thriving in Germany. The Extreme Right Is Delighted.” That should terrify you. Germany is one of the few countries that dealt with its history of genocide, and it should be the last place where far-right fringe groups are thriving. It terrifies me. When QAnon is anti-Semitic (they rail on the Rothschild family) and compare Angela Merkel to a “‘Zionist Jew,’” you know something is very wrong.
I beg all of you to consider how our world is changing and becoming scarier and scarier. Here’s what you can do: go to a phonebook. It’s easy, I promise. Here’s a link to sign-up: https://joebiden.com/call/. If you can’t phonebank, email a local campaign and ask to deliver yard signs or literature (all socially-distanced), email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will help you. And, the smallest ask of them all, make sure the people in your life vote on November 3. Make a plan for yourself and ask THREE, just three, people to make a plan with you.