Thank you for your Facebook post asking about how we are all feeling with the latest SCOTUS decisions and all that has been going on lately. To be honest I don’t know how to feel. In April my boyfriend’s brother Mark along with one of Dorothy Day’s granddaughters, a Catholic priest and a few other Catholic Workers were arrested for protesting nuclear weapons on a naval submarine base. I have been aware of the injustices in the criminal justice for some time however Mark’s perspective of the racism and injustice he witnesses in jail is disheartening. What’s more, they have a motions hearing in August and he is pretty sure that the prosecution is not going to allow them to tell the jury that they are Christian and that their actions were out of the deep fear of nuclear war, and the fact that the UN has already called for nuclear disarmament. So, I talk to him on a regular basis and try to give him hope even though the judge is a Trump appointee (apparently Trump has been quietly appointing lots and lots of federal and district court judges).
Then the same week that I had signed on to fast on behalf of the inmates I heard about children being held in cages, torn away from their parents. I cried for 3 days and couldn’t sleep and because of the fast I couldn’t eat any comfort food to make myself feel better. I am an elementary school teacher and an aunt and I cannot imagine one of my students, or one of my nieces or nephews being pulled away from their parents, not given to another family member, not hugged, not comforted, and having some of their belongings (toys, rosaries, extra clothes) thrown into the trash.
The SCOTUS decisions are painful, many of my fellow teachers feeling despondent especially after there was a national movement for better pay and working conditions. One step forward, two steps back. The Muslim ban makes no sense it seems the court used the opposite logic that they used in the Masterpiece (Colorado cake shop) discussion. You have to take Christian beliefs seriously in this country but it is okay to discriminate against Muslims? This seems like a clear first amendment violation. It’s been incredibly hard and I’m not sure I’m handling any of it well. I don’t watch the evening news but I spend way too much time reading every single article people post on Facebook. So maybe self-care for me is spending less time reading upsetting news, or responding to everything I see on social media and more time spending quality time with family and friends? And I guess keep praying for God’s mercy and that this nightmare will end soon.
“Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” ― Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.