At this point in dealing with the Coronavirus crisis, we must question the status quo and the broken system that creates such widely accepted detachment and disengagement.
Have we all truly been present and engaged with each other?
Do we see, hear, and feel the struggles of those most impacted in our society?
Why do we opt to shelter in our many places of privilege?
Why are we surprised by the rampant inequities?
Do we understand human needs and wants in this city, state, and country in the year 2020?
A sub-microscopic virus has lifted the veil and exposed the ugly reality that American people have denied for too long. All the ills of society have been blamed on those who are least responsible for creating the hardships. The belief that anyone can overcome any challenge if they just work hard enough has been revealed as false. The cracks in our healthcare and education system and lack of safety net programs have been known for a long time. In this situation, we are forced to examine the underlying flaws of our current system.
We need to acknowledge the disparity and inequities that are products of our existing capitalistic structure which is built to delegitimize and degrade those who are most impacted. We need to acknowledge the harm inflicted and amplified by the War Economy. These never-ending funds are invested in colonizing other cultures and ostracizing anyone who is different to meet the demands of the US Imperialist forces.
It is time to rapidly activate and create positive, progressive change in this crisis that continues to shine light on the darkest corners of the capitalistic system which is failing so many people.
We all resist change for a variety of reasons. We reside in our privileged positions in society and often fail to see the inadequacies and needs outside of our comfort zone. We hold onto historical decisions and ways of being when in reality it is time to grow into the next phase of development.
In order to increase the light on the darkest of places, we must adapt and change. NOW is the time to connect and grow into a more representative, equitable, interdependent society. This process is demanding, denies complacency, creates a huge sense of indecision, and may elicit feelings of insecurity. We must stop looking away from the ugly realities and see that we are not waiting for the pandemic to end but rather for a necessary revolution to begin.
Tara McHugh and Michele Mashburn
Staff at San José Peace and Justice Center (from our shared remote working spaces)