This is going to be a difficult post to write. If you're familiar with me personally, I tend to post my political beliefs in the vague way that everyone else does on Facebook: I read articles then repost them if I feel they're important. So actually spelling them out here feels a little forceful. A little more solidifiying to others, even though I am sure all of you know where I stand. However, it's putting a side of myself out into the world that I am mostly silent about day to day and in real conversations with others. I am a social and eco justice warrior. Soon, I would like to see myself as an Ally, but I have a lot more work to do to achieve that title.
When my son was born and I experienced postpartum depression it was like all of the feelings of the world were magnified. I felt everything that was happening around me. The Syrian refugee crisis was in full swing. Humans of New York was posting from Greece, highlighting people who risked their lives to escape war. These were people who saw the risk and decided that risk was better than staying in Syria. Then I saw the horrible treatment that these people were getting from Europe. The ugly side of humanity was in my face right then, it's all I could see and I had this little infant who was lucky enough to be born with us and still completely depended on me for life. The breaking point for me was when the little boy washed up on the shore in Greece. My pain and anger at the injustices of the world wouldn't be silenced anymore. That was the day to open myself up and be more vocal about what I believe we, as humans sharing this world together, should be doing.
I am a person who, at my core, believes that everyone deserves to be treated with human decency. In some ways, I've always been an advocate for those who have been oppressed and marginalized, it just took motherhood for me to find my courage and spell it out. My life and education has brought me to this point. When I was a christian, I went to other countries to help out the poor. When I was in college, I learned how people exploit others for profit and gain. When I was poor, I learned exactly how expensive being poor was. When I lived in the mountains, I learned how important being outside and keeping our air and land clean was. As a mother and military wife, I see where our daily actions are taking us and what that means for our children.
I advocate for the people that I would have likely become if I hadn't gotten really lucky in life. People who work extremely hard, but can't seem to find a way out of poverty or depression. People who live with fear and anxiety. People who aren't accepted based on their race, gender identity, sexual identity, and social class can have a space and a voice. I advocate so that one day my sons will be able to embrace nature without for profit corporations getting in the way. I advocate for fresh air. I advocate for universal love. It's time we start letting people have the chance to be people, whole and free. It's time we realize that we are making a mess and we need to clean it up.
Spruce Knits was made to give light to people who are doing good work in our country and our world. A part of the proceeds from every pattern I sell goes to certain charities, some are personal for me, some are more global in scale. Each one is doing it's best to do it's part to create a healthy and safe environment for our future selves. Know that this is where your money is going if you don't share my beliefs, know that I hold no ill will toward you and know that you are free to take your money elsewhere. It's a part of the game. I am a person with a strong value center, so you wont hurt my feelings. My cause is bigger than my feelings.
Here are my stances:
I stand with Women: As a woman in the world, I see the systemic frustrations that we face every single day. I stand with the idea that we are the autonomous leaders of our bodies. I stand for the right to choose. I stand for the right to say no. I stand for equal pay for equal work. I stand for intersectional feminism, all women deserve equal rights.
I stand with the Marginalized: LGBTQ people should be free to live the life that they identify with, without hate and condemnation, without their fundamental rights being taken away from them. I stand with immigrants (not aliens- they're human beings for god sakes) and minorities and refugees. I stand for the homeless and mentally ill. These people continue to fight an uphill battle for basic dignity. It's time we stop and lend a neighborly hand to those who need it.
I stand with Science: Global warming is not a hoax y'all. Greenland's ice cap has melted beyond the point of no return, and it's still winter. Heat waves in north Canada are also troubling. Each year the Earth gets warmer and warmer. This is our fault. It's only going to get worse if we don't do something. I stand with scientific research, cancer can be cured, Huntington's disease can be treated.
Most importantly, I stand with Love: One of the greatest things we can do is love one another. It's as simple as that. Look at your neighbor and ask yourself if your political actions are going to hurt that person. Look at the beggar on the street as a human being, rather than a drug addict. Look at the person who prays to a different God than you as a brother/sister without thinking that they need to change faiths for you to accept them. Kindness is courageous. Hatred is the coward's way out.
Every day, I try to find the kindness and love in my heart... every day I work for the betterment of our society. It's especially important in times like these. Hold tight to the love you have, it may be the very thing that get's us through this. If you're still with me after reading this giant of a post, thank you. Whether you agree with me or disagree, I love you.