Today is MLK Day. It is two days before Inauguration Day. CBS News is reporting that there are Small protests held at heavily guarded state Capitols as Inauguration Week begins.
The day after the inauguration, I am scheduled to present at a conference.
There is no shortage of excitement this week.
I am writing this post on MLK Day, but I purposely am scheduling to publish it a couple days after Inauguration Day. I want to see if the concerns I have today come to fruition this week.
In light of the insurrection that occurred on January 6th and countless other acts by primarily White domestic terrorists, I fear that there will be more bloodshed on Inauguration Day.
This thought was in the back of my mind, but nobody verbalized it aloud for me until I was in a meeting last week. The meeting was for an alumni group of a professional development program focused on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. I was a cohort member in this program while I was working at my prior employer. It was promoted by human resources and facilitated by the centers for women at my institution.
At the meeting, when a fellow member said that she feared bloodshed, I realized that I did too. For a long time, I refused to piece together those words. I still was processing the insurrection. When she said the word bloodshed though, the possibility became very real.
Do I have hope? Yes.
Simultaneously, I recognize that actions on the individual, institutional, and systemic level need to change in order for that hope to materialize into anything significant.
I continue to be surrounded by people who repeatedly say that we need to think positively, but they are often the same people who did not realize that racial injustice was a major issue until 2020. Based on my conversations with them, they are not taking any tangible actions to change the direction of the country so that we can have a substantive reason behind our hope.
I hope that when I read this post a few days from now, I can say that my concerns did not come to fruition. Even if I could say that though, it does not mean that my fears were unfounded. There is a sound basis for my fears. Whether or not they come true, I am giving myself permission to feel the fears and give it to a Higher Power.
Not everyone might believe in a Higher Power, and not everyone might believe that this Higher Power cares about what is happening here on Earth.
This is simply the thing that I am choosing to do to get through it all.
I have my coping mechanisms, and you have yours. As long as they are conducive, I support whatever measures people take to persevere during Inauguration Week.