I look outside my window today morning at work with a heavy heart. A lot has been surfacing in our country over the past months, years, things we like to believe didn’t exist; problems we thought solved, cries we thought answered. But they were never solved, never answered, just suppressed, oppressed, tucked away just enough for the rest of us to pretend America really was great (again). People are suffering here. People are fighting for their rights here. They are fighting a force which, if given power, would think it acceptable and worse, necessary, to take their lives. Black lives matter.
I look outside my window today morning and see the same trees I see every weekday. Big, beautiful, lush green trees littering the city streets and trailing off deep into density in the distant suburbs. I marvel at the beauty because it simply is – there is no orchestration beyond the planting of a seed or sapling. Each tree, of many varieties, grows at its own pace and colors itself with its own palette. The branches reach and span different lengths; their leaves bouquets of uniqueness. My view wouldn’t be beautiful if I looked out the window and saw the same exact same fir tree stamped throughout the city. The site would be unsettling, and unnatural.
People are like trees. Yes, this was coming. People are like trees, different, the same, struggling to grow, reaching for the sunlight, bowing in the wind. Most trees are beautiful, by nature, they’re lucky that way. Some though are rotten. Some trees stop growing prematurely, and others let rot overcome them for years, decades. They may stand quietly for a time, but eventually rot likes to spread. This doesn’t mean we tear down every rotten tree to protect the healthy ones. It means we water, we nurture, we hold fast to the beautiful trees. We plant them in abundance and plant them in light. We tend to them with a fervor. We grow so much beauty that the unfortunate rot becomes powerless. Completely powerless under us, because we have united and we have grown. Our branches are thick and entwined, and they’re not breaking.
I’m tired of being a silent ally. Let’s protect each other.