january 7th, 2022
Two of my middle school friends were in the news last month. One was fired as a school lunch cook for writing “LET'S GO BRANDON” on a wall calendar. The other was in a NYTimes story about Planned Parenthood and its inadequate on-the-ground protection for abortion, especially with respect to women of color. Planned Parenthood, and my middle school friend (now a fairly high level comms director for them), believed in the power of the Roe precedent.
Did the shabbiness of our middle school experience translate into shabby adults? Could i have ignited reason and courage in my friends, and by now read news about them that would make me proud?
Of course i'll never know all the people who've followed my example and stood up to a bully, to a sexual harasser, to an authority figure of poor character.
i've found grace by letting myself believe that polarized and shabby quality of thought is a function of lead-poisoned water, lead-poisoned minds.