Checked out of the library
I am one of the disproportionate one-third (Blacks) of 2,033 people Seattle Public Library administrators kicked out of its libraries from 2013 to 2015. I was told to leave three times since August 2014. In March 2016, two White male security guards suddenly appeared at whichever of the 27 city buildings I entered to get a respite from my homelessness by reading, writing and/or using a computer, just like numerous other patrons.
However, the two “biased policing” security guards surveilled me unnecessarily because I dared to tell them to “Stop it,” whereas they “exerted their authority” (evicted me) whenever I boldly challenged their discriminatory behavior, especially against my ethnicity and economic status.
I am a different face of homelessness: An outspoken, spiritually strong, highly educated, skilled, knowledgeable 71-year-old mother and grandmother who spends time engaged in activities that continually strengthen and enhance the mind/intellect, body and soul of myself and for others.
Stand your ground
The sentiment expressed by Faith Eakin in her Real Change opinion piece (“We need kindness to replace the anxiety that has pervaded this election year,” Nov. 16) is exactly why Donald Trump is our president-elect. It’s more of the flawed false equivalence reasoning that got this bully elected.
Trump’s strategy was to constantly throw mud at Clinton, the vast majority of it outright lies, while stoking racist me-first tendencies of White Americans most affected by income inequality (inequality I might add that is a direct result of a Congress that still pushes the lie of trickle-down economics). It was Trump alone who made this a horribly nasty campaign, but he wanted you to think it was bad on both sides and thus sit out the election or vote for him.
By “protecting” the children from the nasty rancor of the election that you are saying was equally bad on both sides, you are buying the bully’s tactics.
In my opinion, a more correct strategy is to use this as a teachable moment to teach children the difference between right and wrong; between rudeness and respect; between bigotry, sexism, anti-immigrant sentiment and inclusiveness; between narcissism and caring for your neighbor; between using the world’s resources for personal and corporate gain and being a good steward of the environment who cares about future generations; between unbridled meanness and kindness; between hate and fear and love and hope. It’s time to condemn Trump’s campaign for what it was: everything that is wrong with this country.
That’s the conversation we owe our children. Anything less is to teach our children that Trump’s tactics are OK, that the way to deal with a bully is to cower in the corner and let them run roughshod over you and the less fortunate. Kindness is the answer, but let’s show our kindness while standing our ground.
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