Published at 5:00 am Wednesday 5 November 2018 |
The Republicans "did not fancy me" to be very politician. Funny that accused me only when I fought for policies that protect my children.
I had become a Republican. In all the presidential elections until 2016, I voted for the Republican, like most of our friends.
Our Republican friends supported our adoptions in 2012 and 2013. Many have expressed our decision more than they ever deserve, calling it an explicit choice for life when all we did was choose a less conventional way to add to our family. Most have a "girlfriend" now.
Why; Because I was very political, they said. The policy was acceptable when the abortion was restricted through the courts, which I prevailed. That's not really about politics, they say, it's about life. However, once I spoke in favor of politicians for the preservation of our children's lives, it was politics and not life.
Are policies to keep my children alive very politically?
Democrats proposed in June a budget with cuts in rights plans, including Medicaid, to offset costs. Our daughter is kept alive and thriving because of a Medicaid removal program for medically complex children.
The chairman was dismissed by his entire council on HIV in December. One of my children has HIV.
People with US birth certificates – citizens – have been deprived of passports in Texas. people across the country may be at risk if they use state benefits. We used public assistance in the form of reduced meal and early intervention services and my four children are immigrants.
More: Trump's plan for the executive order of the champion will force the courts to act. That's good.
I experienced an anti-Semitic shot. I know how hatred armed with a gun turns deadly.
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The Republicans in the US House promoted CEC 620, a law that would exhaust the Americans with a Disability Act, if the senators of the Senate had not delayed it. My daughter uses a wheelchair and my son is autistic.
Senate majority leader Mitch McConaul said that if Republicans win enough seats in these elections, they may review the abolition of Obamacare. Five of my six children live under pre-existing conditions that would make us physically vulnerable if my husband ever lost his job and insurance based on his employer.
Anti-racist justice is very politics for my old friends and is rejected by those who have been elected. But the research overwhelmingly shows that my black guys would be dealt with harder for the same crimes than my white children.
A recent leaked memo shows that the Trump administration is thinking of redefining gender as rigorous binary protection and protecting trans and nonbinary people, and the Justice Department has ruled that businesses can discriminate against workers. I have a child she recognizes as a creative sex.
Our old friends tell us that the adoption of our children was about life, not politics, but somehow policies to keep them alive are very political. I do not understand. Everything about politics is about life.
I do not agree that it is in favor of life to insist politically that children are born (or adopted) and then abandon the policy to support their lives. That felt the night of the election in 2016, as if we had left our Republican friends who did not want to vote for Hillary Clinton but did not have to vote for Donald Tramp.
Put your armor – my family has
After the presidential election, I was deeply saddened. Then, uncomfortable with the depth of this pain, I began to shield myself. Initially, the anger hid my deep sorrow. Soon, my armor of anger fades into an ankle shield, a chest of superiority, a cynic helmet, and a sarcasm sword.
My old friends were putting me even more when they called me very politically. Instead of seeing my fears and listening to my voice shaking, they avoid our pain hiding behind a shield of individualism, every human, family or subgroup for themselves. For those in the dominant culture – white, male, cisgender, straight, Christian, capable, American-born – a helmet of privilege, kept them seeing that issues that are a simple policy for them are the same as they are for working us to be safe and alive.
Trying to understand. However, the rhetoric of the two sides is not what will help here. I do not call for courtesy in front of tube bombs. I ask for truth and integrity.
A cheap righteousness that shines over injustice in the name of courtesy does not end, eventually. I recall a verse from the prophet Jeremiah in the Hebrew Bible: "She wore the wound of my people as if it were not serious." Peace, peace, "they say, when there is no peace."
Lately I have seen so many serious wounds with insufficient bandage. As for me, I hide my own behind the armor. Today, I want to put it, to reveal the bloody bandages behind the shields, to admit how much pain I hide and to recognize that we are all bleeding as we continue to fight each other.
As I show my pain, I beg of my Republican friends, those I have left and those who have left. Please, think about the lives of my children holistically. Consider the ways in which conservative warriors – perhaps themselves included – have confirmed the importance of our children's lives during the adoption process. Thank you for being there for us. As you are now examining candidates for the mid-term elections, consider what would seem to be the same validation for the lives of each member of our family.
We all put our armor to see our family growing up. Is it too much to ask you to do the same to see our children and all the other children thrive? Is it too much to ask you to vote for how our life depends? Why they do.
Shannon Dingle is a teacher and Mom became a bounce activist and writer in Raleigh, North Carolina. He has written about The Washington Post and Teen Vogue.
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