The Collective


So the last few weeks months years have been hard on a lot of people. To be blunt, many of you who are used to being on the winning side of issues have lost. Repeatedly.

This has been hard for you to take. On top of that, some of you have learned some disappointing things about people you thought you knew.

Well, I have two things to say about this: First, as a person of color, I can tell you it’s not the end of the world. POC have been disappointed by our government and people we thought we knew since we’ve been here. But we’re still here and we’re still fighting. As a woman, I make the same statement.

My second thought: I think we’re at a point where things could change if we’re willing to take a step back, put our personal biases and opinions to the side and look at the bigger picture.

Instead of separate groups fighting individually, we need to be one huge force.

People who kneel. People in pussy hats. People who fly the rainbow flag. People who are in the thick of the immigration fight or battling the opioid epidemic…

All of us.

At some point, we’re going to have to come together as a collective. The issues might be different, but the foe is the same: We’re fighting the power. Until those of us who are being oppressed in one way or another come together with one voice, we’re just going to keep spinning our wheels. Sure the power might give us an inch or two once in a while to make us think we’re making progress, but in actuality, we’re not getting anywhere fast.

And for those of you who say, “Yeah, we’ve tried that, but when causes group together the meaning of the causes lose their impact,” you are missing the point. Do you know why the impact was lost? Three words:

Divide and Conquer

And here’s three more:

Separate but Equal.

Individual causes stood side-by-side, yes. But they still fought their battles separately. And this allowed the people with the power to whisper in each group leader’s ear that the other groups really didn’t care about their issue, they were just using their platform, resources, etc. So the leaders of each group turned on each other.

Separate but equal and divide and conquer. The oldest tricks in the book and we fall for them both time and time again.

So, one more time for the latecomers, and a bit louder for the people in the back:

WE NEED TO WORK TOGETHER. We need to quit with the crazy, “Well you should have been with us when it didn’t directly affect you,” nonsense and join forces. And for emphasis, more examples:

Did you join the #MeToo movement, even if you weren’t personally involved or directly affected?

Did you kneel even if you weren’t a target of police brutality?

Are you voicing your concern about how immigrants (legal or otherwise) are being treated in this country? Or are being denied entry?

How about the LGBTQ+ community, the homeless, veterans or the mentally ill?

The opioid crisis?

If you’re not front and center on every last one of these issues, I don’t see how you can shoot down the idea of all these groups banding together. Matter of fact, I think you and your opinion should take several seats.

This is all about power, folks. The ones who have it don’t want to relinquish it. It’s obvious that the balance of power is not equal and it’s just as obvious that each group taking a turn on the scale isn’t enough weight to tip the balance in anyone’s favor.

But if we all stand on the scale…that would be the tipping point.

Anyway, those are my thoughts. Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comments.

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