Sending a message that compassion, inclusion and respect are the only ways forward can be a tricky task. But that is the task at hand now as ever—to remind ourselves and those around us that to move forward we must support one another, that hatred is destructive, and that possibilities are not lost when we keep striving for them. Readers have the advantage of gaining knowledge not only from personal experience but also from the many worlds of our books. Spreading our knowledge requires strength, as does pledging to keep our minds open to acquiring more. But I continue to have hope that knowledge and understanding are the keys to stemming fear and its unwelcome yet oft companion, hate.
We will all find the best use of our own voices if we keep trying. Here are a few ideas for supporting and amplifying voices of inclusion.
For example, check out I Wanna Dance!, which author Paul J. Rodriguez describes as "a fun and thoughtful children’s book promoting global unity by using dance as a means of celebrating our diversity."
recognize the voices of so many who have felt hate:
Author Grace Lin: “The election has told me that half of this country believes that I don’t belong in this country, that many of my friends don’t belong here and probably that even my daughter doesn’t belong here. Regardless of the Constitution, where we were born or how long we’ve been here, we will never be American enough to them. And, what hurts me so deeply, is that they don’t want to change their minds.”
Comedian Hasan Minhaj via Vanity Fair's on his Daily Show speech: "naturally, he is also very scared for himself and his family, in the face of a presidency that could potentially increase racism and Islamophobia. As the comedian put it, 'I’m panicking because melanin doesn’t rub off.' ...
Minhaj said he can’t help but recall the day Trump called for a ban on all Muslims entering the U.S.—a date he said he remembers because 'it’s the birthday of the worst f*** day of my life.'"
Check out twitter at #kidlitsafetypins, for posts such as these:
Author Maggie Stiefvater: “There is no one way to fight, because all of us who opposed this president-elect are very different — that’s part of what makes us who we are. For some people, fighting will mean supporting marginalized friends and strangers if policy moves to threaten them. For others, it will mean forming activist groups to amplify voices that may be stifled and to address harmful voices that might arise. For still others, it will merely mean being brave enough to move past paralyzing anxiety.”
Heroine Katniss Everdeen, aka Actress Jennifer Lawrence: "This country was founded on immigration and today the only people that feel safe, that their rights are recognized and respected are white men...
But like Hillary, you can still be an inspiration and get important things done. Do not let this defeat you—let this enrage you! Let it motivate you! Let this be the fire you didn't have before. If you are an immigrant, if you are a person of color, if you are LGBTQ+, if you are a woman—don't be afraid, be loud!"
See so many who are united to stand for the rights of each of us:
a pairing for you
food pairing: Spring lamb acorn squash soup with An Ember in the Ashes
food pairing: Cherry coconut toaster pastries with The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland