I’ve always loved the parts of history most would rather forget.
When my husband asked why, I realized it was because I don’t find them depressing. I find them inspiring.
For every generation, there was an opportunity for the world to choose their sides. What made some choose to stand with the persecuted and the oppressed, while the mass majority stood by and did nothing?
My biggest fear was that I might be one of the many that would stand silently by when our generation was faced with its yellow star moment.
Its whites only water fountain.
Its “No XYZ allowed.”
I almost missed it when came.
It was subtle.
Everyone was doing it.
The church condoned it.
The government required it.
The propaganda pushed it.
But then I realized, this was our moment to choose our sides.
I once read that Corrie Ten Boom’s father stood in line with his Jewish friends for a yellow star. Not because he was required to wear one, but because he recognized the discrimination and evil intent behind the symbol of the star.
I could wear a mask.
It would be easy for me to comply.
Socially acceptable and politically correct.
The "right" thing to do.
Why would I refuse to do this simple thing? Refusing gets me nothing but dirty looks and hate speech and lost business and lost friends and lost trips to the museum and denied entry into our own church.
Because, when I refuse to wear a mask, I’m drinking from the “colored only” water fountain.
I’m standing in line with my Jewish friends for a yellow star.
I’m risking my livelihood and reputation because I believe this is the moment when we all get to choose our sides.
Ridiculous? Tell that to my friend who was horrifically abused as a child and cannot wear a mask, and is now refused entry to every store, restaurant, and church in the city.
Overreacting? Tell that to my friend whose autistic child cannot wear a mask, and now cannot go to his favorite grocery store, school, or the zoo.
Paranoid? Tell that to my friend who dons a mask she hates just to keep her job because she will lose her position and her paycheck if she refuses.
Selfish? Oh, how easy it would be to don the mask with the majority. To stand silently behind the fabric of complicity. To be an anonymous sideline spectator in this battle rather than don the uniform of a selfish smile.
Everywhere we go, we can choose to wear our masks and comply with a lie built on fear, propaganda, and deception. Or we can choose to feel the shame, judgment, and discrimination that our friends are facing.
Every. Single. Day.
I’m choosing my side.
It's the one with contagious smiles.
Who is with me?
(Picture of Kramer and my girls to prove the scientific facts of this completely opinion post...because even Donkeys smile.)
Oh yeah, our soap is awesome. Getcha some.
Because writing doesn't pay the mammoth feed bill.