Ive been radicalized and I wasnt aware.
Certain people call me the radical Left all the time.
I never considered myself radical before.
I just thought I was normal, ordinary, usual.
I thought equity was important to everyone.
I imagined America was filled with people who took that Life, Liberty,
and Pursuit of Happiness stuff seriouslyfor all people.
I thought the Golden Rule was actually mainstream.
Recently I took an inventory of my positions, screening for the extremism:
I believe in full LGBTQ rights.
I believe we should protect the planet.
I believe everyone deserves healthcare.
I believe all religions are equally valid.
I believe the world is bigger than America.
I believe to be pro-life, means to treasure all of it.
I believe women should have autonomy over their own bodies.
I believe whiteness isnt superior and it is not the baseline of
I believe we are all one interdependent community.
I believe people and places are made better by diversity.
I believe people shouldnt be forced to abide by anyone elses
I believe non-American human beings have as much value as American ones.
I believe generosity is greater than greed, compassion better than contempt,
and kindness superior to derision.
I believe there is enough in this world for everyone: enough food, enough
money, enough room, enough careif we unleash our creativity and
unclench our fists.
Im not sure how these ideas became radical, though it seems to
have happened in the last few years.
I grew up being taught they were just part of being a decent human being.
I grew up believing that loving my neighbor as myself, meant that I
actually worked for their welfare as much as my own.
I was taught that caring for the least in the world, was the measure
of my devotion to God.
I thought that inalienable rights of other people were supposed to be
a priority as a decent participant in the world.
I dont think Im alone.
In fact, Im pretty sure that most people reside here in this place
alongside me: the desire for compassion and diversity and equality and
justice; that these things arent fringe ideologies or extremist
positionsbut simply the best way to be human.
I think most people want more humanity, not less.
I think the vast middle is exhausted by the cruelty of these days.
That these aspirations seem radical to some people, is probably an alarm
that theyve moved so far into the extremes of their fortified
ideological bunkers and been so poisoned by the propaganda, that normal
now seems excessive, that equality now seems oppressive, that goodness
Maybe the problem is, these people are so filled with fear for those
who are different, so conditioned to be at war with the world, so indoctrinated
into a white nationalistic religion of malicethat theyve
lost sight of what being a human being looks like anymore.
I am pretty sure that I dont represent the radical Left,
but the vast, disparate, compassionate, humane Middle; people who are
not threatened by someone elses presence, who do not see another
persons gain as their loss, who dont worship a Caucasian,
I suppose humanity feels radical to inhumane people.
In that case, Ill gladly be here in my extremism.